Among the important citizens of Mysore state, based on their oratory skills and efficiency, I can say from the bottom of my heart, that Abbas Khan sahib belongs to the top echelons.
A Special Incident
A scholar used to attend all the Sahitya Parishat meetings. But, Venkatanarayanappa wouldn’t give him much attention. He would be kept isolated. Let’s say there were perhaps reasons. Let’s call him Mr. X.
When the Sahitya Parishat met in Chikkamagaluru, it looked like Mr. X pleaded with Rao. Rao said “Venkatanarayanappa, please give him a chance now at least. He wants to tell something; he will keep whining otherwise. Please show some mercy!”.
I’ve heard that medical experts document in detail, in accordance with their working philosophy - the onset of an ailment in a patient, its progression, the effect the ingested medicine has in curing the patient, and so forth (as evidence) in their articles and books. I too have suffered some ailments in the past. I’m interested in developments in medical sciences. I intend to record a few case histories that could possibly help future editors of pharmacopeia. I will present two cases now - Hunger and Indigestion.
Sri K.T. Appanna hailed from the Aruvelu Brahmin sect. He was originally from Kollegal. His father was Sri Tirumalaswamayya working as a First Division Clerk at the Bangalore General Post Office, earning about ₹ 70-80 a month. This was a big salary in those days. But he had a family big enough to match it. Tirumalaswamayya’s wife’s elder brother Sri Ramaswamayya and his wife and children, Tirumalaswamayya’s sister-in-law (a traditional widow), two or three other sisters-in-law, their children…the family was indeed large. And then there were guests and visitors from time to time.
The Nature of Rasikas
It will be appropriate to explain the purpose behind reminiscing several musicians and rasikas. The purpose is simply the lament that connoisseurship has decreased in today’s world. Everywhere and in all walks of life, the business mindset reflected by the materialistic nature of people has increased. The number of people asking the question “What do you get by listening to music?” is increasing. High-rise buildings have value. Silk clothes have value. Motor cars have value.
One of the stories of Sri Ramakrishna
Whenever I remember Bindu Rao, a story that Bhagavān Ramakrishna Paramahamsa often narrated comes to my mind.
A scholar approached a king with request to help. The king asked him, “What is your area of scholarship?”
The scholar replied, “I expound the Śrīmad-Bhāgavata.”
“Is that so? That is good to know! I’m curious to listen to the Bhāgavata-purāṇa. But I’m not at leisure today. If you’re here next Saturday, I will be able to sit and listen.”
I've mentioned earlier that Venkatanaranappa was unassuming, disciplined, honest, dispassionate, and hard-working. There were, however, a couple of qualities that were unusual for a person of his stature, namely friendliness and humorous nature. Though he was conservative and religious in certain matters, tenderness that is innate to humans was not a rare quality in him. He desired to have the constant company of friends, comedy filled with wit, and regular association with other humans.
Beginning of Bhārata-vācana
This group of literary and musical connoisseurs made it a routine to take turns and meet in one of the houses every day after work, once they freshened up. H Nagesh Rao was a tenant at Mirmira Rama Rao’s house on Arcot Srinivasacharya Road. I’ve been a part of this group meeting many times. Venkatakrishnappa would usually sing something. Someone else would chant a Śloka. Bindu Rao would recite the Bhārata. I still wasn’t acquainted with Bindu Rao back then.