ONGOLE: On the eve of the 73rd Independence Day when the entire nation is in a jubilant mood, the legacy of legendary freedom fighter Tanguturi Prakasam Pantulu is something to take pride in. The move of naming the district after him was in respect to the sacrifices he made.
On this day, people also pay homage to other notable figures like Karavadi Venkateswarlu, Gullapalli Adinarayana, Ravipati Mahananda and Duggirala Gopala Krishnaiah, who led the historic Chirala-Perala movement. Tanguturi Prakasam Pantulu, the first chief minister of the new Andhra, created by the partition of Madras state, was born and brought up in Vinodarayunipalem near Ongole.
A memorial was also built at his native village, with the words ‘Andhra Kesari’ (Lion of Andhra) inscribed on it. It was an apt title for him as he feared no one. A notable lawyer who attained his degree from London, Tantuguri Pantulu spent his earnings on charity and creating social awareness through his newspaper ‘Swarajya’. During Tantuguri’s lifetime, people of his village were staunch Gandhians.