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Actor Lokesh is dead

By Our Staff Reporter



Lokesh

BANGALORE, OCT. 14. Well-known film and theatre actor Lokesh died in a private hospital here today after a prolonged illness. He was 57.

He is survived by his wife, Girija, daughter, Pooja, and son, Srijan.

Mr. Lokesh suffered a cardiac arrest on Monday and was on a life-support system for the past two days. He had suffered a paralytic stroke some time ago.

Many people, including the Chief Minster, N. Dharam Singh, the veteran actor Rajkumar, and B. Saroja Devi, visited him in hospital on Wednesday.

Special place

Known for his resonant voice and histrionic talent, Mr. Lokesh carved a niche for himself in Kannada cinema and theatre by acting in many films based on noted Kannada literary works and in plays authored by reputed names.

Many people paid their respects to Mr. Lokesh at the hospital and at Ravindra Kalakshetra, where his body was kept for public viewing.

Mr. Lokesh, who was deeply involved in theatre, entered films with Girish Karnad's Kaadu based on the late Alanahalli Krishna's novel at a time when the Navya tradition of Kannada literature and new-wave cinema were making a mark on the Kannada cultural world.

The roles he played in some landmark Kannada films such as the avenging feudal landlord in Kaadu, the avaricious Ayyu in Siddalingaiah's Bhootayanna Maga Ayyu, a tribal rebel in C.R. Simha's Kaakanakote (based on the late Masti Venkatesha Iyengar's semi-historical play), a deceived husband in Maruthi Shivaram's Parasangada Gende Thimma and a confused character in the late P. Lankesh's Ellindalo Bandavaru, brought him accolades and honours.

He bagged the State Government's best actor award three times. The role he played opposite Amrish Puri in Kaadu and as Ayyu with Vishnuvardhan are said to be among the all-time classic characters in Indian cinema.

Mr. Lokesh, son of the veteran stage artiste of yesteryear, the late Subbaiah Naidu, was known for his frank and friendly nature and dignified attitude.

Body donated

Mr. Lokesh's family donated his body to M.S. Ramaiah Medical College and Hospital. The body was removed to the hospital after formalities were completed at Bhagwan Mahaveer Jain Hospital where he had been admitted.

Mourned

The Chief Minister, N. Dharam Singh, has expressed shock over the untimely death of Mr. Lokesh.

In his message, Mr. Dharam Singh said, "Lokesh was a magnificent theatre person. His contribution to Kannada theatre is fabulous. He was definitely one who was instrumental for the golden era of Kannada theatre."

Mr. Lokesh gave a definitive and distinct direction to the film acting. If Mr. Subbaiah Naidu, who acted in the first Kannada movie, brought distinction to Kannada cinema, his son Lokesh certainly brought a breath of fresh air into film acting, Mr. Singh said.

The Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president, B. Janardhana Poojary, has also expressed grief over the demise of the film actor.

H.D. Gangaraj, president; Sa. Ra. Govind, K. Janakiram and K.N. Vasudevamurthy, vice-presidents; and other office-bearers of the Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce (KFCC) also mourned the death of Mr. Lokesh.

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