KARWAR/MANGALURU: VETERAN Yakshagana artiste and Padmashri awardee Chittani Ramachandra Hegde has been admitted to Kasturba Hospital in Manipal on Friday night after he complained chest pain. The artiste, who is a well known figure in the coastal belt of Karnataka, hails from Guddekeri village in Honnavar taluk of Uttara Kannada district.
The hospital sources said the condition of an 85-year-old artiste is stable and he is responding to treatment. “All efforts are being made to revive him. Hegde was hit by partial paralysis and also developed breathing problem. A team of doctors is attending to him,” the sources said. He played hundreds of roles and performed in India and abroad. He has a huge fan following and he is the main attraction in the dusk to dawn Yakshagana shows held in Dakshina and Uttara Kannada districts. Narayan Hegde, a Yakshagana enthusiast from Udupi, who visited the hospital on Saturday said the doctors had told him that Chittani is responding well to the treatment.
Many organisations and individuals held prayers in temples of Kumta, Honnavar and other parts of Uttara Kannada district for the speedy recovery of Chittani. “He is popularly known as Chittani Ajja for many in Karnataka. Chittani is a legendary Yakshagana artiste and his expression of Nava Rasas is the most popular one. His fans are waiting for his speedy recovery and want to see him on the stage soon,” said G L Hegde, Tala Maddale artist from Kumta and a close aid of Chittani.