Friends Memorabilia

Shaheen Islam - Bangladesh


The garland of amity, P K Saru!!

The magnanimity of Saru matches no words! The wonder women of South East Asia with a magic healing touch to change life. The power of her words affirms freedom – freedom of mind, soul and spirit. She makes a massive difference in my life with moment to moment transformation giving new meaning of acceptance. She is more than a mentor or guru shedding light to grow in skill and competence. Her compassionate care reaches beyond all boundaries from my kinfolk to inside-out. Her garland of magnificent choices connects my human fragility with spontaneity and hope from within.


There is no end to telling about Saru just as there is no parting of Saru from my life. Saru is present and will be present forever with her glorious charismatic force till I meet her to say ‘Hello’ again with the same intensity. Waiting eagerly for the day!! No ‘Goodbye’ only to follow the golden road to eternity.


My voyage with legendary Saru started long before in the early 20’s with TA101. I am thankful to our beloved Khursheed Erfan, prodigy of the counseling crusade of Bangladesh, for introducing Saru. To fill the gap of certified counsellors, Ain O Salish Kendra (ASK), a legal organization, came forward to become a platform to train us in a systematic way. Besides offering TA 101 two times a year, Saru schemed first Diploma in 2002-2003, followed by two more. The upsurge extended to Dhaka University arranging TA101 and looking at the possibility of further expansion. TA Forum was organized by Department of Educational and Counselling Psychology to spread the voice of TA community in Bangladesh at national and international arena. Consistent persuasion of unfailing Saru tied all of us together in ebb and flow. Then a time came when there was a sudden change in the makeup of ASK policy constricting the scope of the training.


The shared vulnerability and Saru’s commitment to the growth of TA in this region led me to connect the endeavor with HEAL Bangladesh Foundation to keep the continuity of Saru’s guidance. Then after Nasima kept the boat sailing through her brilliant leadership. Saru’s last visit at Freedom Within with Elana Leigh, the ITAA President, was a showcase of Bangladesh TA community to international alley. Yet the utmost fear of the fear came true. Beloved Saru travelled beyond earth to be one among the brightest stars in the galaxy of my heart for all time. I treasure many living experiences with her that if unfolded would be more than a saga. The anguish of not living up to her aspiration will remain in me with regret. In the present greater vastness of boundless Saru, I do hope and pray for her compassionate forgiveness.


Undoubtedly, as far I can gauge the pulse of all those connected with Saru, this would be an echo of many more from Bangladesh. The greatest challenge is to keep the torch illuminated. Have a peaceful life thereafter in the everlasting world my dear dearest Saru!! Undoubtedly you deserve the best!!!

Elana Leigh, TSTA(P) - Australia


Saru is a magnanimous woman, a mentor, and a friend, someone who will be kept alive through all that she gave us in her rich lifetime. She is synonymous with Indian Transactional Analysis where she endlessly devoted decades of her life energy to build and grow a community, which today stands proudly, competently, and firmly in the international community.


She was a courageous woman who was committed to fight and stand up for justice, equality, and integration. Through surviving her own personal struggles, she developed a deep empathy and capacity to facilitate people to find their voice and become the best versions of themselves.

She was and died a proud Muslim woman who strived for an India and a world where all religions could live respectfully and harmoniously together. She lived a deeply spiritual life and her boundless love and energy affected and touched many, who will carry the love forever.

She died as she lived—in charge of her destiny, amongst her loved ones and true to herself.


Saru may your soul rest in peace and you can be sure that we will carry you with us wherever we travel and in all that we do. Thank you for your dedication and love.

Julie Hay, TSTA (COPE) - UK


I first met Saru when I was ITAA President and she, along with Sister Annie, offered to host the 1993 ITAA Conference in India. I was delighted with the offer, I was delighted when the ITAA Board accepted the offer, and I was delighted when I attended the conference – and at the same time 'discovered' India. Since then, I have visited India many times so I spent a lot of time with Saru, staying in her home sometimes, having her stay in my home in the UK, and generally having a great time with her.

She was indeed a significant figure within the TA community in India and it is a great loss to the TA community. For me, the loss is of a treasured friend. I have so many special memories of our times together.

When I think about our friendship, I remember being together as we flew from San Francisco and enjoyed a fantastic cruise of Alaska that she had suggested.  I also recall another time when I was in bed unwell at her home and she brought me a telephone, having alerted our TA colleagues so they could phone and cheer me up.  I remember the time in my home when I cooked a meal for her whilst wearing a sari, juggling to ensure it did not catch fire at the stove, to show that I could do that after she told me how she learned to swim as a child wearing a sari. And how we would be in touch regularly, including occasions when she would forget the time differences and call me on WhatsApp in the middle of the night in the UK.

When I think about our professional relationship, I remember the times at conferences in many countries, and when I came to join in the multilevel trainings, and how I endorsed her for her TSTA exam, and her sponsorship of me for my CTA Counselling, and her consistent support over the years for the various TA activities I have initiated. Lately we had been liaising about the launch of the World Online TA Association (—now, instead of her becoming a member I can only 'immortalise' her within the TA community by including her, alongside Berne and others, in an Obituary page.

When I think about her legacy, I am reminded of her comments about how practitioners, trainers and supervisors all bring their essence to their various roles, and how the guru models rather than teaches. She believed that this modelling comes from a place of conviction, growth and integration, with a high degree of authenticity. As I have read tributes to her that have already appeared, it is obvious that so many people have benefited from experiencing her as their guru.

I was disappointed in 2018 when the floods prevented me from reaching the conference in India, at which she had invited me to be the opening speaker 25 years after I had thrown the doves into the air at the start of the 1993 conference. I had no idea at that time that we would be losing her before I could meet her in person again. However, I learned from her many years ago about Vipassana, and how a high level of intimacy becomes possible once we recognise the universal truth of impermanence.  She also spoke of the transitory nature of feelings, although I am still hoping that she was right about that as I wait for my deep sadness to pass.

Shirin Afraz - Iran


“Saru's mission - observing and accepting the reality.

I remember in my first trip to India to many unknowns, I was anxiously waiting in front of the door to a big conference room, when I first saw her wearing a beautiful sari and a big smile. I was invited to go to India by P.K.Saru. I vividly remember that very moment. My journey with her started right there and then. Under her supervision, I started exploring TA.

In the next several years, every year that I had to go to India she asked me to stay at her house for 3 weeks each year. She would stay at my house when she came to Iran.

Our time together was immensely inspiring. We travelled together and shared many happy and sad moments. At the time, she found out her sister had expired, we were working together on a program. Observing how she deals with her loss, how she asks for strokes, and accepts them without any hesitation was a life lesson for me.

She enjoyed every second of life with her presence. She worked hard all her life even in late 70s. In Iran, we organized 6 three-day workshops in different cities. Life was her mission. After a day of hard work, it was time for her to enjoy the nature, the culture and the community. She loved going to parties, weddings, parks, cinema and travel.

When I was in India, she would plan our days to be fruitful and enjoyable, paying attention to the smallest details. She valued the rituals and cultural differences. She would go out of her way to teach me all about them and to explain it to our other friends as well.

Heavy sanctions against Iran started around the time my baby was born. The situation became almost impossible for me to continue my TA studies under her supervision. I decided to quit. It was her encouragement and support that held me tight not to give up. She supported me to go through the hardship and continue working even harder than before.

When she was in hospital few months ago, we talked about my fear of losing her. She told me I understand but it’s not the time to say goodbye yet.
Three days before her passing, she asked me to turn in my written exam as soon as possible. I had a feeling that the time to say goodbye to her is getting closer. I was sad but I know I must work even harder now.

She was my Guru, my teacher and my role model. I loved her whole heartedly.

I cannot find the right words to express my feelings for her. Losing her is a big loss. But the influence she had on my life is forever!

Rest in peace my lovely Saru, your smile to life is eternal.”