You will be remembered
I met Mani Kiran in 2013 in CIE, IIITH and he just re-joined CIE Team. A year or two before us he worked for few months in the team. Srinivas Kollipara was heading CIE at that time. By that time I and Raghu have already joined. Raju Garu has joined after a while.
I found Mani Kiran to be too fishy at first. Because he was too nice. He was too helpful. In fact, I found him to be boastful about how good he is at work and he said he can get anything done. If someone says he is too good over and over. I would only assume he would not do as much as he speaks.
Maybe I was naive or maybe people like him are rare. It took me a bit of time to understand how he is really.
He became a very good friend and our team in CIE worked closely with each other. And more than colleagues we were friends. We had a lot of trust in each other work and as a person too.
I remember we would start for lunch at the same time. While I would stop in the canteen for a samosa, sandwich with a lot of mayonnaise, and a coffee. Because I was too lazy to walk till the mess. He would always go to the mess and eat because the food is organic and healthy. I always found healthy food boring back then. But for him, he loved eating healthy food every day.
I quit CIE after a year but was hanging around and worked from CIE itself on my startup. And I quit without too much planning on finances. I asked few friends for money and he is one of them. I was always sure to pay back in a given time. But a couple of times I missed and was feeling guilty.
With him, he would come and say- Manoj, I haven’t asked for the money back. I know it's safe with you and I hardly need the money. It was not about extending a date to pay back. But it always feels good to see someone so trusting in you. I came across few people who were generous at helping and definitely he tops the list for generous and kind people.
I used to feel super guilty about how nice he is and I knew I can’t be so nicer as him ever. Now I don’t have a chance to show it back.
If you have worked with Mani Kiran, you know his most time would revolve around his work and trying to help people as much as possible. He was honest.
When I heard the news about his demise. It was shocking and I was lost. Me, Raghu and Raju Garu had a con call and spoke about it. It was surreal that he wasn’t there when the three of us were speaking. Had a chat with Srinivas and he was shocked too.
I saw the CIE group and everyone said the same things about him. Everyone in the group said, he was — very helpful, always smiling and a pleasant person to be around. Few of them said them when they hear CIE, they would remember Kiran because he was his go-to person. He finished a tenure roughly of 13 years helping startups at CIE (from the start of his career there) and that’s a lot of help to a lot of startups during his time.
A couple of days back Raju Garu called me and said Kiran was in the hospital and I was told he is pretty normal. He asked me to call him and check normally, he was very normal by then I was told(I haven’t called him the next day, but I really wish I made that phone call). Even on the day of his demise, I was told by Raju Garu that he asked him to send a phone charger and nothing was abnormal.
We can’t get Mani Kiran back but we can stay safe and keep memories of him alive.
You can help his family. Few friends from CIE have started a fundraiser to help his family in this difficult time. He recently became a father and have a 4 months handsome boy.
You can donate to his family through Milaap, even a small contribution helps—
To pay via Paytm (for Android users only) — https://milaap.org/fundraisers/support-mani-kiran/deeplink?deeplink_type=paytm
PS: For people who haven’t seen his fun and crazy side, I have a picture of him to show you. Check here.