Noted poet, Padma Shri awardee Asavadi Prakasa Rao passes away

Merupu Teegalu is a collection of poems. Dedicated to his teacher Nanduri Ramakrishnamacharya, the book contains poems on the great scholars of his life.

Published: 18th February 2022 06:36 AM  |   Last Updated: 18th February 2022 06:36 AM   |  A+A-

Asavadi Prakasa Rao.

Asavadi Prakasa Rao.

By Express News Service

ANANTAPUR: Noted poet and Padma Shri awardee Asavadi Prakasa Rao died of illness on Thursday afternoon. He was 77.  Prakasa Rao received several awards in recognition of his contribution to Telugu and Sanskrit languages. He was awarded Padma Shri in arts and literature category in January 2021.

As Ashtavadhani, he gave 170 performances and wrote and published 50 books across genres. His most notable contribution is his performance of Avadhanam. Born on August 2, 1944 in Korivipalli of Singanamalla mandal in Anantapur district to Kulayamma and Fakeerappa, he was called Asavadi (optimist) by his teacher Nanduri Ramakrishnamacharya.

Prakasa Rao said his poetry was his caste when people asked him to which caste he belonged to. An expert in Ashtavadhanam, he performed his first one in 1963 at the age of 19. Since then, he was stamped as the only Dalit Avadhni in Andhra literature and mesmerised his listeners with his extraordinary perceptiveness and indescribable majestic energy. 

He performed 171 Avadhanams, a double octave, not only in Andhra Pradesh but also in other parts of India such as Tiruttani, Arakkonam, Pallipattu, Hosur, Bengaluru, Bellary, Donimalai, Delhi. His observations were also broadcast on television and radio. 

Some of his literary works include Pushpanjali, which was published in 1968. It contains poems about the glory of his teacher when he went to attend meetings along with Dr. CV Subbanna Shatavadhani. Varadaraja Ashtakam was an arrow pointing at the inequalities in society. Vidyabhushan is a biography of Bhogishetti Jugappa, IAS (retired), who contributed to his development. 

Merupu Teegalu is a collection of poems. Dedicated to his teacher Nanduri Ramakrishnamacharya, the book contains poems on the great scholars of his life. Potana Bhagavatamu-Third Skandhamu was written as a simple prose translation of Bhagavatam Third Skandhamu as part of the TTD’s Potana Bhagavatam project, and received several editions since 1986.  Antaranga Taranagalu is a collection of poems containing 52 passages. 

Prakasa Rao, a recipient of several awards throughout his life, received his first award from former President Sarvepalle Radhakarishna. He was honoured with the Balakavi award when he was a degree student.  

India Matters


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