Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Profound condolences on the demise of Sri MS Rajalingam, a veteran freedom fighter, Gandhite and also an advocate

Prominent Telangana Congress leader, freedom fighter, Gandhian Sri MS Rajalingam departed in the early hours of Monday, 23 January 2012 and his burial in sitting posture (per the custom of Lingayats) was conducted in the Bansilalpet (Secunderabad) cemetery the same (23-01-2012) evening. We express our profound condolences to his family and friends and pay tributes to this painstaking worker for social uplift and ardent devotee of the cause of Telugu national unity.

Sri M.S. Rajalingam's father hailed from Eemani, Tenali region, Guntur district and his mother from Warangal. MSR himself was born and brought up in Warangal. Here are some biographical details of MSR as told by himself:

"I am a native of Warangal. I was a student of Hanumakonda High School, Warangal and took my H.S.L.C. from Hanamakonda High School.
I was a student of Nizam College, Hyderabad and took my B.Sc. degree from Madras University and LL.B. degree from Osmania University. I worked as a part-time lecturer teaching transfer of property in the Law College of Osmania University in the year 1984. I was also a faculty member of Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Hyderabad in the year 1986 teaching labour laws. I am now the Chairman of Gandhi Bhavan Trust, M.J. Road, Hyderabad and also the President of Andhra Pradesh Freedom Fighters Organization with Registered Number 1166/1982.

I was elected as M.L.A. from Warangal Constituency in the first general elections held in 1952 and elected as an M.L.A. for the second term in 1957 from Chellamcherla Constituency, both constituencies part of Warangal district. I had been associated with INTUC Specialist Trade Union Delegation for which late Sri Khandubai Desai, a veteran Gandhian was the President. I had been a member of delegation of 18 countries under the I.E.S. Programme at the instance of Labour Department, Government of India, to study labour problems in 1958. In that connection I visited U.S., France, Canada, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Britain and studied labour problems therein. I also worked as [Congress] Working Committee member in 1951 and also as Secretary for the Congress Legislative Party in 1957 and also as an Editor of Andhra Pradesh Legal Cell Bulletin for six years.

On hearing about the devastation caused by the Cyclone (Uppena) in Diviseema, Krishna district in 1977, I requested the Hon’ble High Court of Andhra Pradesh to permit me to let me concentrate on the relief and rehabilitation work there and accordingly permit all my cases to be represented and argued for by my Juniors and not to insist on my presence and if that is not possible to treat this request letter as my resignation from the profession. Thereafter, I left for Diviseema for relief and rehabilitation work and constructed 200 houses for the needy victims in a village, which were inaugurated by Sri P.V. Narasimha Rao (former PM of India) and that village renamed as Gandhi Gram.

I had the privilege of giving my opinions or writing forewords to many important books, a few of which are:

1. Marxism Medhavula Matthu Mandu, by Sri Piratla Venkateswarlu, Editor, Krishna Patrika.

2. Andhra Kathalu by Sri M.V.R. Sastry, Editor, Andhra Bhoomi.

3. Life History of Sadguru Sivananda Murthy.

4. Teliyani Telangana – compilation of 52 articles published in Andhra Bhoomi Telugu daily.

5. Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose by Smt. Lakshmi Parvati.

I was awarded the Great Son of Soil Intellectual Award in 2004, along with Sri Akkineni Nageswara Rao, and received it through His Excellency Sri Shinde, the then the Governor of Andhra Pradesh and now Union Minister.

The following books are dedicated to me:

a) Glimpses of Sri P.V. Narasimha Raoby Harischander, Noida Publications.

b) My Life recorded as that of a freedom fighter in Nehru Memorial Museum, New Delhi.

c) My Life History – running to about 600 pages.

d) Opinion on the Life history of Sri Kodati Narayana Rao, veteran Gandhian, [along with the opinions of] Sri Baddam Yella Reddy, M.P. and many others.

I have been associated with political and social movements and activities both as a student (from 1930 onwards) and later as a political worker – first in the former State of Hyderabad and later in Andhra Pradesh. I had also been in Seva Gram Ashram as a companion to Gandhiji for about two years.

I was a participant in the Quit India movement in 1942 – I organized the same in Warangal district, for which I was convicted and sentenced to 2 years imprisonment and was kept in Warangal Jail. I also took part in the Telangana People’s struggle against Nizam autocracy and was incarcerated for long periods in that regard. I was also externed from Warangal district. In 1946 I was confined in Chanchalguda Jail, Hyderabad. I am a recipient of Tamrapatra from the Government of India in recognition of my role in the struggle for independence.

Subsequent to the ‘Police Action’ by the Government of India in September 1948 through which the Nizam monarchy was overthrown and the Hyderabad State was merged with Union of India, in November 1949 the Vishalandhra Mahasabha (meaning ‘Greater Andhra Congress’) was formed under the presidency of Sri Ayyadevara Kaleshwara Rao, M.L.A., who later became the Speaker of Andhra Pradesh Assembly. Dr. Sabhapathi and I were Joint Secretaries of the said Vishalandhra Mahasabha, a conference of which was held at Warangal in 1950 and an unanimous resolution was passed for the formation of Vishalandhra with the merger of Telugu speaking areas of the Hyderabad State with the Telugu speaking areas of the Madras Province, with Hyderabad as capital. Even the Maharashtra and Karnataka Provincial Committees had passed similar resolutions at that time for the division of Hyderabad State and merger of respective linguistic regions of the State with the same-linguistic regions in the adjacent States of the erstwhile British India.

I was a Deputy Minister in the first Burgula Ramakrishna Rao ministry formed subsequent to the 1952 General Elections.

In the light of my previous experience and study of various political movements in the State and as having been in touch with political movements and developments in the Telangana region, I tried my best to ponder over the subject and submitted a note with the caption: “A Note on the historical evolution of the Telangana movement, and a solution for the present Telangana Tangle,” to both the State and Central Governments in the year 2009 for their consideration. I also submitted the Note and a representation, along with Mr. G. Jayant Kumar, President, Chaitanya Samiti, Sircilla, Majeti Shankar, Editor, Saleha, Mr. Yas, social worker, Hyderabad, V. Satyanarayana Sarma, Joint Secretary, Bhagyanagar Khadi Samiti, Hyderabad, and enclosing several crucial papers, to the Srikrishna Committee when they visited Hyderabad."