GIRISH Karnad, Director-Actor & Writer, Passes Away

GIRISH Karnad will be remembered for his versatile acting across all mediums, says Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressing grief over the   demise of the veteran actor-director and playwright on May 10 due to age related ailments at Bengalaluru. Karnad also spoke passionately about the causes dear to him. His works will continue being popular in the years to come, PM Modi added. Janpath, Padma Bhushan and other coveted award recipient Girish Raghunath Karnad was a celeb film director, Kannada writer, playwright and a Rhodes Scholar. He predominantly worked in South Indian cinema and Bollywood. He turned 81 on 19 May .Among his noted movies are Nagamandala, Ek Tha Tiger, Vamsha Vriksha, Nishant. His famed plays are Taledanda, The Dreams of Tipu Sultan, Odakalu Bimba, The Fire and the Rain. Karnad, who often used history and mythology to tackle contemporary issues, had his works translated into various Indian languages and helmed by directors like Ebrahim Alkazi, B V Karanth and Alyque Padamsee among others.Karnad had made his acting as well as screenwriting debut with a 1970 Kannada movie Samskara. The film, based on a novel by UR Ananthamurthy and directed by Pattabhirama Reddy, won the first President’s Golden Lotus Award for Kannada cinema category. Some of his popular Kannada movies include Tabbaliyu Neenade Magane, Ondanondu Kaladalli, Cheluvi, Kaadu and Kanooru Heggaditi.His Hindi movies include Nishaant, Manthan, Swami and Pukar. He had acted in a number of Nagesh Kukunoor films, starting with Iqbal  in which Karnad played the role of a ruthless cricket coach. This was followed by Dor, 8 x 10 Tasveer and Aashayein. In 2012, he played the role of RAW chairman, Shenoy, in Salman Khan-starrer Ek Tha Tiger. He reprised his role of Shenoy in Tiger Zinda Hai. “He was an acknowledged versatile personality who fiercely fought for the truth. He was a well known accomplished, multitalented and enlightened humanist …A Courageous Compassionate Soul …Thank God for Him…He certainly was a Voice for the Voiceless……Raised his Voice against injustices and oppression…God comfort the family and thousands of Supporters” says Dr V Poornima. Girish Raghunath Karnad was born at Matheran now in Maharashtra. His mother Krishnabai  was a young widow with a son.While training to be a nurse, she came in contact with Dr. Raghunatha Karnad,a doctor in the Bombay Medical Services. Due to prevailing prejudice against widow marriage, their wedding was delayed as long as five years. They had to  go to the Arya Samaj where their marriage was solemnized and thereafter they were acknowledged as a couple. . Girish Karnad was their third of four children. His parents were supportive when he was interested in plays. His family moved later to Dharwad in Karnataka when he was fourteen. He grew up in the city with his siblings and learnt Kannada, Dravidian language spoken in the southern state of Karnataka, its culture and history which reflect his most of his works (edited by Pranab Kumar Chakravarty).

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