Some Councillors - Part 1

Purna Krishna Rao was a councillor during the era of Dewan Rangacharlu. He was the very first councillor from Mysuru.

He was born and brought up in Mysuru.

I have heard from respectable people that he was scrupulously honest, sattvik and honourable.

His son was Purna Raghavendra Rao. He was a preceptor to Maharaja Krishna Raja Wodeyar IV. Later, he was a huzur secretary. He was initially an excise commissioner during the time of Sir M. Visvesvaraya and later a councillor.

Purna Raghavendra was a co-founder of the Mysuru Graduates Trading Association (GTA). He has probably authored a treatise in Kannada on mineralogy (or perhaps zoology?).

His English would find approval even from the native English speakers.

Ratnasabhāpati

Ratnasabhāpati Mudaliar, just like Purna Krishna Rao, was one of the earliest councillors. He was a resident of the Bengaluru Cantonment area. He was well renowned as a cultured man. There is a village called Chandapura situated about 6-7 miles on the road leading to Hosuru and Anekal towards the east of Bengaluru. It is well known for its village fair. I believe that the dharma chatra (charitable lodge) that Ratnasabhapati Mudaliar built still exists today. I have seen the photos of several famous and well known people on the walls of that dharma chatra.

It is with some pride that I can recount an incident here: Ratnasabhāpati Mudaliar, with some scholarly help, had translated the portion of Vidura Niti in the Mahabharata to Kannada and published it. That is the only book I have ever received in my life as a prize! This incident is from 70 years ago! I still remember the great joy that I experienced when I first read that book. That Ratnasabhāpati Mudaliar had this book translated to Kannada is a testament to his character. Does such greatness still exist in our country today?

Chanchal Rao

I have written about P. Chanchal Rao in the article on Sheshadri Iyer. He was a large hearted and generous man who admired Sanatana Dharma and also cared for the citizens. He could be described as an embodiment of these four qualities - scholarship, care for fellow beings, discernment between what is appropriate and inappropriate, devotion to his dharma.

Chengai Srinivasa Iyengar

Chengai Srinivasa Iyengar was a Chief Secretary during the time of Sheshadri Iyer and later a councillor. He was very astute in managing his duties. Even his physical stature was awe inspiring and a fellow worthy of seeing! He had a dominating speech; and so was his English writing.

After retiring from Government work, he was a President of the Chikkaballapura Light Railway Company. At that time, I had the fortune of witnessing a series of correspondences between him, on behalf of his company, and the Government. In regard to that disputed matter, I had written something critical in my newspaper, perhaps in 1909-10. I seem to have forgotten that matter now. It appears that Srinivasa Iyengar was in agreement with what I wrote. He sent the company’s secretary Kotamaraju Ramaswamiah to me with a request asking for an appointment to see me. I responded that “It was not right for such a great man to take the trouble to see me. Instead, I would go to see him”, and keeping my word, went to meet him. I had never seen him before that meeting. But when I went there, I remember him talking to me very cordially and affectionately.

Sometime later, he was the President of the Central Cooperative Bank. Then, he showed me some of his correspondences with the Government. The registrar then was M. A. Narayana Iyengar (who later after renunciation, took Sannyasa under the name Srinivasananda). Srinivasa Iyengar and Narayana Iyengar were close friends. They even played cards together! But in the matter of disputes and disagreements regarding the Government and official work, it appears that their friendship was never a consideration. They sparred as wrestlers of equal strength!

K. R. Srinivasa Iyengar

K. R. Srinivasa Iyengar was a sub-divisional officer in Kolar for a while. I know him from his time during that stint. He was well known for his erudition in Mathematics. He and the Rt. Hon. V. S. Srinivasa Shastri studied together in Kumbakonam.

Srinivasa Iyengar was careful, astute, clever and efficient in his work. He was the Chief Secretary during the tenure of Sir. M. Visvesvaraya. He was a co-minister during Banerjee’s time. He was well versed in matters related to revenue law and administration.

He was kind hearted and helped people in need while also being an able administrator.

In his old age, he devoted his time to the study of divya-prabandham.

Chandrashekara Iyer

K. S. Chandrashekhara Iyer and K. R. Srinivasa Iyengar both passed the Mysuru Civil Services exam attaining the first and second ranks respectively and rose up the ranks. As Chandrashekhara Iyer had also passed the B.L (Bachelor of Law) exams with first class honors, he was able to hold top posts even in the judicial department. Chandrashekhara Iyer was an efficient and able worker and had no trace of laziness in him. Also, he was not one to neglect even trivial things. He had an intimate and clear understanding of the law. Along with a clear understanding, he was also embodied with discipline and dedication to his duty. In any matter however small it may be, he never lowered his standards and carried out his duty with dedication. His English handwriting was squarish and compact. He had a bluntness and frankness to his nature, but was not heartless. Along with his wife Parvatamma, he established the Mahila Seva Samaja in Shankarapuram. He has also participated in several charitable deeds other than this. The couple had an innate sympathy towards poor people and those in distress. Chandrashekhara Iyer had a great affinity to music and literature. The couple were both pillars of support to the Theosophical Society. Chandrashekhara Iyer’s service record was pristine and blemishless. The couple were pious and believed in social and religious customs and traditions.

Chandrashekhara Iyer was also a Sanskrit scholar. So also, he was a scholar in Mathematics. To summarize, he was of a systematic and disciplined nature.

Abdul Rahman Sahib was a Deputy Commissioner and later a councillor and colleague to Sir. K Sheshadri Iyer. I have heard from others that he was of an untainted character, sympathetic and cultured man. During his time, he was well received by the citizens and by the administrative class and held in high regard.

This is the first part of the translation of the twenty-eighth essay in D V Gundappa’s magnum-opus Jnapakachitrashaale (Volume 8) – Samkirna Smrti Samputa.

Author(s)

About:

Devanahalli Venkataramanayya Gundappa (1887-1975) was a great visionary and polymath. He was a journalist, poet, art connoisseur, philosopher, political analyst, institution builder, social commentator, social worker, and activist.

Translator(s)

About:
Pratap Simha indulges in the study of Indian culture, history, arts, and literature. He is particularly fascinated by classical Sanskrit and Kannada literature. He is an amateur stage actor and a poet. He also has a PhD in Electrical and Computer Engineering and works as an engineer in California, USA.

Prekshaa Publications

The Mahābhārata is the greatest epic in the world both in magnitude and profundity. A veritable cultural compendium of Bhārata-varṣa, it is a product of the creative genius of Maharṣi Kṛṣṇa-dvaipāyana Vyāsa. The epic captures the experiential wisdom of our civilization and all subsequent literary, artistic, and philosophical creations are indebted to it. To read the Mahābhārata is to...

Shiva Rama Krishna

சிவன். ராமன். கிருஷ்ணன்.
இந்திய பாரம்பரியத்தின் முப்பெரும் கதாநாயகர்கள்.
உயர் இந்தியாவில் தலைமுறைகள் பல கடந்தும் கடவுளர்களாக போற்றப்பட்டு வழிகாட்டிகளாக விளங்குபவர்கள்.
மனித ஒற்றுமை நூற்றாண்டுகால பரிணாம வளர்ச்சியின் பரிமாணம்.
தனிநபர்களாகவும், குடும்ப உறுப்பினர்களாகவும், சமுதாய பிரஜைகளாகவும் நாம் அனைவரும் பரிமளிக்கிறோம்.
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