The Common Man is the creation of author and cartoonist Mr. R. K. Laxman. For over a half of a century, the Common Man has represented the hopes, aspirations, troubles and perhaps even foibles of the average Indian, through a daily cartoon strip, “You Said It” in The Times of India. The comic was started in 1951.
Every morning, the ‘Times of India’ gives people its first page with ‘You Said It!‘, the reflection of the Common Man – who is quiet spectator of the events, politics, inflations and the country’s economic rise and fall. Over more than half a century, Common man has been the voice of India.
His ‘Common Man’ with his unchanging dhoti and checkered shirt and a perpetually bewildered expression symbolizes the mute millions of India, a silent spectator of marching time. The ‘Common Man’ who finds that the leaky tap in the bathroom is of greater concern to him than the failure of the summit, or the rise in the cost of toothpaste and tomatoes is more bothersome than the deficit in our foreign exchange reserves.
I put this article up as a tribute to Mr. Laxman as i grew up looking at his cartoons, and as i wish to salute the person who (knowingly or unknowingly) attempted to initiate branding for the common man of India.