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A singing freedom fighter

Last updated: 01 October, 2010
Srinivaspur, October 1, DHNS:

Naidu went around inspiring people with music

P Ramappa Naidu, an 83-three-year 'young', energetic man, is a man who once spread the message and spirit of independence among the people in the border areas through songs.

Freedom fighter P Ramappa Naidu walking in his garden at Rayalpad with his wife Subbamma. DH Photos

This great man has made the Gandhian philosophy a part of his life, and living them as a model for others.

Born in Rayalpad, a village in the border areas, in 1927 to P Ramayya and Acchamma, Naidu took to agriculture as his occupation immediately after his primary education.

Sound of music

He utilised a childhood passion, music and singing, while fighting for independence. He would visit villages silently in the night and sing patriotic songs to enthuse people to take part in the struggle.

In 1942, the call for Quit India Movement by Mahatma Gandhi inspired Naidu and he called upon the people of the border areas to unite and join the freedom movement.

He even succeeded in inviting great leaders like K Pattabhiraman, Hardikar, Kengal Hanumanthayya and K C Changala Rayareddy to Rayalpad to deliver speeches and draw people.

Attack

In 1947, a team of freedom fighters under the leadership of P Narayana Reddy attacked a police station in Rayalpad and burnt the ammunition and documents in the station.

Naidu was a part of the group.

Remembering the incident, Naidu says warrants were issued for arrest of 40 of the 80 members of the team that attacked the police station. He was one of the 35 people arrested by the police.

“Recollection of the physical torture imposed on us makes my blood boil to this day. During the aeroplane punishment, the rope severed and I fell down, unable to move my limbs for days after that,” Naidu says.

It was only after the declaration of Independence that Naidu was released from prison.

Resilience


His marriage to Subbamma was fixed before Naidu was arrested and jailed. Assuming that Naidu would never be released, Subbamma’s parents suggested that their daughter marry somebody else. Subbamma, however, refused. She had her own fight, insisting that she would marry only this freedom fighter, but none else.

Subbamma married Naidu after he was released from prison. Naidu participated in the Bhoodan Movement led by Vinoba Bhave too. In 1959, during the World Agricultural Exhibition, he visited Delhi as a representative of the State and met President Dr Rajendra Prasad and Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru.

Appreciation


Naidu has received innumerable awards given by various organisations for his social service and service to art.

Naidu has seven children. His son P R Ramadas Naidu is a famous film director. Another son P R Vishwanath Naidu is a teacher. His five daughters are home-makers.
He lives on the one-and-a-half acre ancestral land as a farmer.


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