Staff Reporter

`Even today people remember him as a super Chief Minister'

BANGALORE: Democracy, federal structure and secularism form the basis for peace and political stability in the country, according to Jnanpith Award winner U.R. Ananthamurthy.

Dr. Ananthamurthy was delivering the first ever R. Gundu Rao Memorial Lecture organised on the occasion of the 70th birth anniversary of the former Chief Minister by a trust named after him here on Saturday.

He said Mahatma Gandhi brought in a class of political leaders who were known for their erudition and public responsibility. Ram Manohar Lohia brought in a new breed of thinkers into politics. Indira Gandhi, through her son Sanjay Gandhi, brought in young politicians who developed their own style of functioning in the country's politics.

In this context, owing to his penchant to speak his heart out, the political entry and achievements of Gundu Rao remained significant, Dr. Ananthamurthy said.

Humanity always felt the need for equality, spiritualism and modernity. Even politicians, irrespective of their stature, could not escape from these needs.

The success of Gundu Rao as an individual and politician lay in the fact that he stressed on modernity. His statements such as "I am a Brahmin. But a chicken eating Brahmin" were the product of his brand of modernism, Dr. Ananthamurthy felt.

He said that the achievements of Gundu Rao as Chief Minister for three years would remain indelible in the history of the State. People remember him as a super Chief Minister even today.

Gundu Rao's son Dinesh Gundu Rao, MLA, welcomed the gathering.

Governor of Gujarat Naval Kishore Sharma, the former Minister D.B. Chandre Gowda and Bangalore University Vice-Chancellor M.S. Thimmappa were among those who spoke. President of the Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee M. Mallikarjun Kharge presided over the function.