I started knowing well the late Rameshwar Nath Kao after 1977, when his erstwhile bureaucratic entourage deserted him to loneliness. I also witnessed the same circles flocking around him in 1981 on his appointment as ‘senior adviser’, only to abandon him in 1984 after Indira Gandhi’s assassination.
A secret of his success was his disinterest in projecting personal power and achievements despite the extraordinary aura related to his position in those days. He thought big for the country, chose suitable means and persons for reaching the highest foreign echelons, and delegated without obsessive supervision. He was elegant without being ostentatious, affectionate without being haughty. He did not splurge on secret funds nor did he create a huge supervisory security structure in his second assignment, which he could have. Above all, he was always a warm and kind man.