NELLORE: Meet Vemulapati Madhava Rao! A 72-year-old magician and humanitarian from Kavali town in Nellore district. He has completed his diploma in Civil Engineering and has worked at the PWD department for a brief period after which he pursued his passion for magic. What makes him stand apart from other magicians is that Madhava uses his skill to educate people on the various social evils and how they can be eradicated.
He has worked with several banks such as Andhra Bank, Indian bank, Indian Overseas Bank, NABARD to spread information about their initiatives to the people living in the rural regions of the State. The 72-year-old has performed in Andhra Pradesh as well as in parts of Karnataka. Through his magic shows, he collected a sum of `2.40 lakh which he donated towards various causes including Leprosy rehabilitation and welfare of the disabled.
Recognising Madhava Rao’s efforts, Dr Lakshmi Narasa Reddy, a member of the Rotary Club, invited Rao to join the Rotary Club in Kavali. Rao was later elected as the Secretary in 1990. During this tenure, he focused on the problems that the aged population in rural ares were facing. He soon realised that most of them had poor eyesight. So, he took an initiative to arrange cataract surgeries for them. “In the 1990’s, we conducted a five-day cataract surgery camp in rural areas. We offered the people free food, bed, medicines and spectacles. I was able to help 600 people to get their cataract surgery done,” Madhava Rao recalled.
The magician also worked towards spreading the word about Polio drops in villages of Prakasam and Nellore districts. He conducted public meetings to create awareness on Polio and the drops that could protect people from the disabling and life-threatening disease caused by Poliovirus. The magician has also motivated people in rural areas to donate blood. During the lockdown, Madhava Rao along with the Indian Red Cross Society distributed food to the migrant workers.
At 72, Madhava Rao has continued to serve the needy in the society. Madhava Rao has so far received 12 national awards, 2 international awards and 20 state level awards for his magic shows across the country.
“I cannot express in words the joy I feel while serving the needy. I am glad that my efforts of reaching out to the needy in rural parts of the State have been recognised by former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the Late former President Pranab Mukherjee. I will continue serving the needy until my very last breath,’’ Madhava Rao said.