CV Narasimhan

His confidant and closest associate, CV Narasimhan, U Thant’s chef de Cabinet, shares rare insights about U Thant: “U Thant was a Buddhist, but not a fanatic. Indeed one could not conceive of his being fanatical on any subject, except perhaps in respect of his total commitment to the Charter of the United Nations. From his religion derived his modesty and humility. It was these qualities which made him repeatedly assert in the course of 1966 that he would not be available for a second term as Secretary-General. He used to say that no person should aspire to a second term as Secretary-General. His calmness in times of crisis bordered on nonchalance and was in fact sometimes even criticised when it was mistaken for indifference. His total serenity in his personal relations was no doubt the cause of his ulcers; although his doctors advised him to 'explode' now and again, it was inconceivable that he would, even to save his health.”