Activist-journalist Vittappa Gorantli passes away

Vittappa Gorantli  

Koppal-based progressive activist, writer and journalist Vittappa Gorantli, 73, died of a heart attack at his residence in Koppal late on July 22. He collapsed on the road while returning home after completing satsang (religious gathering) at his Sadananda Jnanashram, situated close to his residence. He was rushed to his residence where he breathed his last. He is survived by his wife, two sons and a large number of friends and followers.

He had consulted a doctor two days ago complaining of chest pain. The doctor, who examined him and his ECG report, had said that his health condition was normal.

Mr. Gorantli was honoured with many awards, including Karnataka Rajyotsava Award, Karnataka Madhyama Academy Award and DVG Sadbhavana Prashasti.

Born on May 15, 1948 in a poor weaver’s family, Mr. Gorantli lost his father when he was a two years old. He was nurtured by his mother whom he always remembered for her love and care for him, and her hard work and sufferings, for moulding his future.

He had to discontinue his studies after Class IV owing to acute poverty and join his family's weaving profession. However, his hunger for reading and passion for theatre motivated his move towards a career as a writer and journalist.

He had worked as a reporter with Lankesh Patrike and then with Hi Bengaluru. He started two newspapers Dinakahale and Kopana Kirana in the late 1990s, but had to give up the venture. He went back to writing special reports and columns for publications in Karnataka. His columns, poems and essays were published by major newspapers and magazines in Karnataka. He had served as district president, district secretary and State Committee member of Karnataka Union of Working Journalists.

Mr. Gorantli had entered the world of theatre by playing a woman’s role in Tayiya Karalu at a young age and went on to enact different roles in many dramas and was also a playwright. Devara Hoo, Lakshmana Rekhe, Kama Dahana and Gadyogadha are some of the popular plays he wrote and acted in.

He had made a significant contribution to Kannada literature with his collection of poems and short stories, biographies, plays and other literary works. Kappodala Kere, Ee Neladodalalli, Yaaroo Haadada Haadu, Noorentu Hani and Sere are among his collections of poems.

Mr. Gorantli had actively participated in the Gokak agitation in 1982 as vice-president of Koppal Kannada Kriya Samithi. He was at the forefront of struggles for formation of Koppal district, Koppal Zilla Bachao Andolan, Save Tungabhadra movement and many more progressive struggles. His residence had always been a meeting place for social activists of different streams and ideologies.

He developed an interest in spiritual activities after coming in contact with Guru Kalappa, which led to the establishment of Sadananda Jnanashram in 2005. He had, since then, been actively involved in spiritual activities.

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Printable version | Sep 23, 2021 3:23:21 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/activist-journalist-vittappa-gorantli-passes-away/article35482901.ece

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