CBM High School alumni form panel to revive the past glory of the school

They came from different socio-economic backgrounds and their age varied between 35 and 90. Some are well-known businessmen, some retired high ranking officials and a few film actors. But, the common thread which linked them was: they are all alumni of the CBM High School.

The love and admiration they have for their alma mater and their teachers is worthy of emulation. Their only concern was the apathetic attitude of the government towards the 176-year-old institution. Nonetheless, they have decided to form a committee and contribute their mite for the revival of the past glory of the school.

Kolluru Jagannadha Rao, who recently celebrated his 90 birthday, went nostalgic as he recalled his happy days at the school and the love and respect teachers commanded from their students in those days.

The nanogenarian, who was a regular contributor to the Vi(za)gnettes column of The Hindu MetroPlus for a long time, brought pictures of the 1936 batch and some other rare photographs and showed it to his schoolmates. “When I joined Mrs. A.V.N. College in 1939, S.V. Ranga Rao was my classmate,” he told them as the participants looked at him in admiration for his association with the legendary actor.

Mr. Jagannadha Rao, who had done his SSLC from CBM High School in 1938, was the senior-most among the participants.

“In 1936, our school was known as the London Mission School before it was taken over by the Canadian Baptist Missionaries (CBM). Our school celebrated its centenary in 1937. The celebrations went on for a week,” he recalled.

Popular actor Vankayala Satyanarayana Murthy, who has acted in 180 films including three Tamil and three Hindi movies, is a student of the 1951-56 batch. “My father, my brothers and I have all studied at the same school,” he said with pride.

Popular consumer activist Chapa Kumar, who was a student of the 1964 batch, said Vepa Kamesam, an alumnus of the school, had served as the Chief Justice of the Madras High Court.

Mr. Kumar, who retired from the service of Visakhapatnam Port, is also chairman of the Old Boy’s Association. Varahalu Chetty of Book Centre, a 1945-batch student, expressed concern at the declining government aid to the school which was coming in the way of educating poor students.

Actor Sushil Kumar Mishro, popularly known as SK Mishro, Kaka Govinda Swamy of the 1943-46 batch, who retired as Subedar Major in the Indian Army, Vankayala Sanyasi Raju (Tataji), Vedula Subrahmanya Sastry, former HoD of the Telugu Department of Andhra University, and retired Additional Director of NSTL K. Chandramohan were some of those who attended. In all, 70 old ‘boys’ attended the meet.