A group of 30-odd women from Ramapuram, Akkineni Nageswara Rao's native village in Nandivada mandal, find it difficult to come to terms with the fact that their ‘Good Samaritan’ is gone forever.

The death of thespian Akkineni Nageswara Rao who breathed his last on Wednesday has spread gloom not just among members of his family, friends and the entire film fraternity but there is an indiscernible section deeply mourning the departed soul.

A group of 30-odd women from Ramapuram, his native village in Nandivada mandal, find it difficult to come to terms with the fact that their ‘Good Samaritan’ is gone forever.

“I had the privilege of direct access to him over telephone. In my last interaction with him a few months ago, I discussed with him how to impart quality training in tailoring to the fresh batch of women from the economically poor households in the village,” says Kandula Siva Parvathi, a trainer at Akkineni Kalakshetram at Ramapuram.

The above batch of women is undergoing free training in tailoring and computer basics at ANR’s photo library which now doubles up as ‘Kalakshetram’.

Driving force

The veteran actor may have visited the Kalakshetram for the last time as early as in August of 2010 but he had always been a driving force for women of this village by keeping in touch with them constantly to cater to their needs.

In his telephonic conversation with the villagers at a gram sabha on August 15 last year, the actor elicited a promise from them that they would do their best to develop the village on all fronts, keeping political interests at bay.

“Nageswara Rao had also accepted our proposal to name the New Ramapuram, now known as Venkata Raghavapuram, after him. We were all eagerly waiting for the official process to commence for the purpose,” M. Laxmana Rao, a village elder, said. The villagers were in fact looking forward to his visit this year again to lay the foundation stone for a proposed Budameru bridge project.

But the news of his death shattered them.

The loss is also deeply felt in Gudivada town where students of ANR College bade a tearful adieu to him.

The huge posters displayed along the road between Gudiwada-Vijayawada and Machilipatnam-Ramapuram had the passers-by walking down memory lane of the illustrious film career of Akkineni Nageswara Rao.

Many residents of Ramapuram left for Hyderabad to pay their last respects soon after the news of his death reached here.