KUALA LUMPUR : Life for former lawyer and retired Court of Appeal judge Tan Sri Vadaketh Chacko George, fondly known as VC George, has been full of achievements.null
The veteran judge not only demonstrated utmost dedication and exemplary lifetime service to the judiciary scene here but has also been through various important events that shaped Malaysia over the past decades.
Apart from being a profound legal expert, George seems to be an excellent storyteller with witty spins.
That was perfectly reflected in his recently published book Some stories I have told and some that I haven’t.
Written in a tongue-in-cheek style, the book takes the readers on a fond journey that narrates stories of camaraderie, friendship and George’s illustrious career as a lawyer and judge.null
It features 100 witty and wondrous tales that span almost nine decades, beginning with his parents from Kerala, India in 1925 to his days in London as a student and his appointment as the sole judge of the High Court in Raub, Pahang.
The book cover is adorned by artwork from Malaysia’s beloved cartoonist Datuk Mohammad Nor Khalid, better known as Lat.
It was published on December 13, 2020 in conjunction with George’s 90th birthday, however, the official launch was postponed to this year due to the Covid-19 pandemic and movement restrictions.
Commenting on the book, George said he has a reputation for making hilarious speeches and because of that he was advised by his friends to start writing down his stories.
Agreeing to his friends’ advice, George said he began to write his life and career stories that he told at parties among his close circle of friends.
“I initially had no plans to publish a book and was just going to put a staple to it and distribute it among my friends.
“But within one-and-a-half years I managed to recollect 100 stories and have it in written format.”
With 100 great tales in hand, George said he was convinced by his family members to publish a book.
George said he tried to put life into the stories as they came to his mind without following any order or plan.
For instance, he said he has a story about his very first encounter with the then final year law student in London, the late Sultan of Perak Sultan Azlan Muhibbuddin Shah, when they were both pursuing their studies in England.
When asked if the 274-page book has any specific message, George said all he hopes for is to get a couple of chuckles and burst-out laughs from his readers.
Despite being a court lawyer and a judge for most of his lifetime, George has a unique witty character which he said was inherited from his father.
“My father was a schoolmaster, and he was often called upon to give speeches at weddings and he was a funny guy.
“I must have inherited those [personality traits].”
The book was launched yesterday by Perak Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah at the Royal Selangor Club in Kuala Lumpur.
The launch ceremony was also graced by Raja Permaisuri Perak Tuanku Zara Salim as well as Chief Justice Tun Tengku Maimun Tuan Mat, former attorney-general Tan Sri Tommy Thomas and some of the country’s top judges, legal experts and foreign dignitaries.
In his speech, Sultan Nazrin congratulated George and said the book consisted of great stories which take the readers on a colourful life through not only his (George’s) life but also that of the nation itself as it was taking form during its early decades.
“The tales and their amusement value are further enriched by the fact that the author and many of his peer group are acclaimed national figures.
“We certainly gain new insights into their characters from their appearances in the stories.”
George served as a court lawyer for 25 years before becoming a High Court judge in 1980.
When he retired at 65, he became an arbitrator for many years and was also highly active in bar politics.
He was appointed as the Bar Council president many years ago and received Malaysian Bar’s 2017 Lifetime Achievement Award.
Some stories I have told and some that I haven’t will be available at all BookXcess bookstores nationwide as well as online at bookxcessonline.comat RM70.
George pledged that the entire proceeds from the sale of the first print (2,000 copies) would be channelled to charitable organisations as well as the Malaysian Bar’s Legal Aid Scheme.
By : MILAD HASSANDARVISH – MALAY MAIL