Kannada thespian Rajkumar's memorial inaugurated

Kannada thespian Rajkumar's memorial inaugurated

The memorial of Kannada thespian Rajkumar was today inaugurated by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah at Kanteerava studio here in the presence of two of South India's superstars Rajinikanth and Chiranjeevi.

Inaugurating the memorial, considered the biggest in the country for a film actor, Siddaramaiah remembered Rajkumar as the ambassador of Karnataka's culture and traditions.

He said the actor's life is inspiration to innumerable Kannadigas. The Chief Minister also announced that he has decided to donate his eyes, inspired by the veteran actor.

Rajkumar, who first acted in the movie 'Bedara Kannappa' as a lead actor in the year 1954, ruled the Kannada tinsel town as its undisputed ruler over four decades. The actor breathed his last on April 12, 2006 at the age of 76.

Remembering getting autograph from Rajkumar, Tamil superstar Rajinikanth said he had not got autograph from anyone else till date, adding he has come to the memorial function as a fan.

Telugu star Chiranjeevi, remembering simplicity of the actor, said Rajkumar is the best example for how people can achieve greater heights in life with their simplicity.

The memorial place now being called 'Rajkumar Punyabhoomi' has become a tourist destination to his innumerable fans.

The memorial spread across 2.5 acres, now in its first phase, consists of 800-seater open-air auditorium, mini water body, landscaping, installation of a three-ft long bronze bust statue of Rajkumar, and an exhibition of 40 photographs of select movies of the thespian.

About Rs seven crore was spent for the memorial till the end of October.Union Law Minister Sadananda Gowda, who's who of the Kannada film industry, political leaders from across party lines, Rajkumar's wife Parvatamma Rajkumar and her three star sons Shiv Rajkumar, Raghavendra Rajkumar and Puneeth Rajkumar were present at the function.

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