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Venkatasubbaiah deserves Jnanpith: Haranahalli

By Our Special Correspondent

Bangalore Jan. 19. The well-known Kannada scholar, lexicographer, and critic, G.Venkatasubbaiah, was today described as one who had been denied the recognition due to him.

Admirers of Prof. Venkatasubbaiah felicitated him here at the Sri Ramakrishna Students' Home at Visvesvarapura, on his turning a nonagenarian.

The scholar is the president of the home founded 84 years ago.

Prof. Ganjam Venkatasubbaiah, who was born on August 23, 1913 taught Kannada at the Maharaja's College in Mysore and the Vijaya College, here.

He was President of the Kannada Sahitya Parishat from 1964-69.

He is best known for editing the Kannada Vishwakosha (Encyclopaedia) and the Kannada dictionary.

He has translated into Kannada 17 books published by the Kendra Sahitya Academy and the National Book Trust. He is a recipient of the Karnataka Sahitya Academy award for his treatise "Muddana Bhandara" and the Kannada Rajyotsava Award.

The former Law minister and senior Congress leader, Haranahalli Ramaswamy, said that Prof. Venkatasubbaiah eminently deserved the Jnanapith Award for his contributions to Kannada literature.

Unfortunately, he lacked a lobby to take up his case. He was an inspiration and an ideal personality. Mr. Ramaswamy, who had headed the State's Administrative Reforms Commission, also said that Karnataka and the nation lacked leaders who could be emulated, in most fields.

The spirit of nationalism was not being instilled among the people leading to distortions. Mr. Ramaswamy also remarked that it was another thing that those who spoke of nationalism were being derided as old fashioned, reactionary, and even opponents of secularism.

The noted Kannada writer, A.Pankaja, the banker and writer, Srinivas Vaidya, and the Director of Medical Education, G.N.Nagaraj, felicitated Prof. Venkatasubbaiah. He was called an ideal and popular teacher who left an imprint on the students and an unassuming scholar.

An address was presented to him by P.N.Hiriyannaiah, former President of the Institution of Engineers (Karnataka), on behalf of the former and present boarders of the Ramakrishna Home.

Prof. Venkatasubbaiah replied to the felicitations and noted that the Ramakrishna Students' Home was providing free board and lodging to deserving and poor students. It was a self-financing institution.

A.V.Subrahmanyam, chairman of the felicitation committee, welcomed the gathering.

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