Memorable tales of yore

INTERACTIVE SESSION

Memorable tales of yore

Nostalgic: Geethapriya taking a look at the photographs with his wife.

He narrated his tale in a humourous way, pausing once in a while, to recollect memories of his youth. Generally perceived as a less-talkative person, Geethapriya spoke spontaneously for hours leaving the audience in astonishment.

 Lakshman Rao Mohite aka Geethapriya was born in a poor family. He lost his father at an early age and started working at The Cubbon Park Hotel as a clerk for Rs 35 a month.
“Popular music director of those times, Vijaya Bhaskar was a regular customer of that hotel. He inspired me to enter the film industry and with his encouragement, I started writing lyrics,” he recollects.

His first film, as a lyricist, was Sri Rama Pooja directed by B R Krishna Murthy in 1954. But it was Bettada Huli which brought him popularity.

“After watching that film, producer Abbaiah Naidu requested me to write dialogues for his movie Hoovu-Mullu. Through that movie, I became a dialogue writer as well,” he avers.
The biggest turning point in his life happened in 1968 with Mannina Maga.
 The film exposed his creativity as a director and brought national award for Dr Rajkumar in the Best Singer category. “I am glad that I worked with an actor like Rajkumar who was so humble and cooperative,” he says.

Even though Geethapriya has directed many movies, people still remember him as a lyricist. “Maybe my songs were able to touch the audiences more than my films. In those days, my songs were accused of carrying Leftist views. It was not true. The poor financial conditions under which I grew up, influenced me to raise my voice against the system,” he reasons.

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