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This boy's going places

At 11, Shivaprasad K. Achar's talent in various fields of art has earned him accolades even from President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam


At three, when most children his age would be playing with toys, Shivaprasad K. Achar was literally painting the town red with his artworks. Although Lord Krishna holding a flute endeared Shivaprasad then, he has come a long way since.

At 11 years of age, he is the sole representative from India at this year's International Children's Art Competition being organised by Unesco in Japan in July.

It was a meeting with Peter Louis, former Chairman of Lalit Kala Akademy, at a drawing competition as a three-year-old that changed Shivaprasad's life and put him on path to becoming an artiste of repute. Shivaprasad can proudly rub shoulders with reputed artists now, much in evidence in his participation in a camp organised by the local chapter of the Association of British Scholars in India here recently.

Caricatures

Besides garnering prizes at various local, district, state and national level drawing competitions since his early days, Shivaprasad has also exhibited his talent to some leading national and local leaders. His caricatures of eminent personalities like Rani Satish, George Fernandes, Veerappa Moily, Veerendra Heggade have all won Shivaprasad handsome praise from these persons as well as prizes in competitions.

Shivaprasad then endeared himself to President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam when he visited Sri Kshetra Dharmasthala on an official visit in January 2004 by presenting Dr. Kalam with his portrait. Dr. Kalam in turn was not only touched by this gesture, but also took the trouble of writing a letter to appreciate the young boy's achievements. Life could not get any rosier for this talented artiste from Puttur ever since.

If all this gives the impression that he is good at painting alone, that is not the case. He is equally well versed in singing, speaking, mono acting, Yakshagana and making idols.



PRECOCIOUS TALENT One of Shivaprasad's impressive paintings

His special talents have won him the National Child Award for Exceptional Achievement which he received from the Union Minister for Human Resource Development Arjun Singh in November 2004.

This unassuming boy has also won accolades from other important personalities including Dharmadhikari of Sri Kshetra Dharmasthala, Veerendra Heggade, the Deputy Commissioner of Dakshin Kannada, Arvind Srivastava, the President of Karnataka Chitrakala Parishat, Bangalore, B.L. Shankar and well-known art promoter D.K. Chowta.

Trip to Japan

Shivaprasad now has to board the plane to Japan. His father Shakti and mother Nirmala, who have seen their son blossom into a promising artist, are doing their best to ensure his participation in the painting competition in that country.

It is in this context that Mr. Shakti appeals to art lovers to help their son not only realise his dream, but also bring laurels to Dakshina Kannada district, Karnataka and the country.

Donors may send their contributions to Shivaprasad K. Achar, Shiva Shakti Nivas, Karmala, Bannur Post - 574 203, Puttur, Karnataka, or credit the amounts to S/B accounts 75270 (Canara Bank) and 41096 (Syndicate Bank) at Puttur.

JAIDEEP SHENOY

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