Trained doctor, self-taught artist can do a world of good

You enter the residence of Dr. K. Prahlad, and you are engulfed by beautiful paintings. They are the product of his second love and passion. The first is his medical career: as the Medical Superintendent of South Central Railway Hospital. A doctor, taking time to paint, to be creative, impresses one. In the midst of his superb works, especially one painting called Daughter of Toil we chatted with himWhat inspired you to paint: “My mother was illiterate, and she did rangolis, when I was in the 3rd or 4th class I began imitating her, and started to draw them on paper.” Relatives and friends admired this work, and detected his talent, and took it onto another level. His class teacher Mrs. Israel encouraged him. would often encourage Dr. Prahlad to draw on the blackboard, and his fellow pupils were amazed, which gave him the impetus to pursue this hobby seriously.

Dr. Prahlad’s first exhibition in 2005 was inaugurated by Jaipal Reddy, and secretary of Lalit Kala Akademi, Sudhakar Sharma, sponsored him and gave him the platform to be noticed. This encouragement went a long way in making him a prolific painter. He in turn wishes to teach art on his retirement, and there will be many of India’s children who will benefit from this creativity. One of his favourite paintings is a black and white sketch After the Rains. He likes it because he thinks it is evocative of an ambiance and atmosphere in a single colour. When does he paint?: “Usually between 2.30 a.m. and 7 a.m., when the world is silent,” he said.

What gave him the most satisfaction? “Last year there was a train accident in the winter season. The train was washed away due to flash floods. 200 people died. The engine and seven bogies were under water. I was one of the first persons to reach the site. I was able to save many lives.”

BETTY SALDANHA

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