It is with immense sadness that we announce the passing of one of our fondest and longest-serving lead SAAS auditors, Viswanathan Padmanabhan. Fondly called Vish by his colleagues, Viswanathan was well liked and respected at SAI, having become a Lead Auditor with SAAS in 2011. He had a distinguished career over 40 years of professional experience with companies that included Tata Steel, SGS India Limited, and Det Norske Veritas (DNV), in addition to his work for SAI.
Some of his colleagues’ remembrances of him…
“How does one express the amazing essence and spirit of Viswanathan, fondly called as Vish by everyone? Vish was selfless, generous, with an uncompromising belief in all that is good and his unwavering commitment to work, family and friends. Words, even the very best of words, cannot pay tribute or truly capture the sense of loss that we are all feeling with his demise. The loss is there, tangible and real within everyone…but Vish exemplified life, love, commitment and an irrepressible belief and faith in seeing the best in everything…even loss.
And so today I would like to honour him, by profoundly feeling and expressing our loss, but also by remembering Vish – an amazing person who worked with us for 12 years. Vish – We’ll remember you with all your special nuances and our memories from all the days gone before that we were privileged to share with you…And today we’ll grieve for you, and cry for you and even smile because of you. And in all the tomorrows we’ll feel you – gone in some ways, but your presence ever near. Go well…stay well…always.”Badrinanth Gulur, Director of Training and Capacity Building in India, SAI
“Vish, as we call Viswanathan fondly, was a good friend of mine. We had done many audits together and spent several evenings discussing various matters of mutual interest such as social issues affecting the industry, the nation and the individual and spiritual topics covering Hindu scriptures like Bhagavad Geetha and Upanisads. I always cherished his company as it helped me to look at life in a detached manner. He was full of compassion, honest, and straight-forward. His audit approach revealed his concern for the welfare of the workers. He was idealistic to the core, which at times made it difficult for people to understand him correctly…
His tall and handsome figure with an ever-smiling face remains in my memory whenever I happen to utter the word “wish” which is close to his pet name “Vish.” I really miss him and regret for not having tried hard enough to revive my communication with him or visit him to know his condition when he was unwell. I pray to the Almighty to give the strength to his family to bear this irreparable loss. May his soul attain Moksha (Liberation) at the lotus feet of the Lord.”D.K.S. Moorthy, Lead Accreditation Auditor and Client Manager with SAAS
“I had the opportunity to know Mr. Vishwanathan for many years. In any of the SAI trainings, I used to meet and have very friendly discussions on SA 8000 certification and related issues.
He had witnessed my course delivery twice when I worked in a certification body, and I fondly remember the experiences discussions with him. After my joining in SAI, I had opportunities to help him in various initiatives and surveys.
He was very friendly, pious and a joyful person.”Murali Subramanian, Manager of Capacity Building and Outreach in India, SAI
“It was a great pleasure to have known and worked with Vish as he supported SAI and SAAS efforts. He was kind, thoughtful with a quiet drive to push us all toward consistency and excellence. He will be forever missed.”Rochelle Zaid, Senior Director of Standards & Impacts, SAI
Vish passed away from cancer on the morning of Friday, August 13 at his home in Bangalore. Our deepest sympathies go out to his family, friends and loved ones.