Today marks the birth anniversary of the great Indian freedom fighter hailing from Andhra, Sri Tanguturi Prakasam Pantulu, also known as Andhra Kesari.
Once the Chief Minister of Madras Presidency, Sri Pantulu played an instrumental role as a freedom fighter during the pre -independent era of the country. Born into a simple Telugu Niyogi Brahmin family in the village of Vinodarayunipalem, young Prakasam grew up in an environment of hard work and discipline. He studied on to become a successful lawyer and was elected as Municipal Chairman of Rajahmundry when he was just 31 years old.
Tanguturi also travelled to England to pursue legal studies further and joined the Royal Indian Society to work for the election of Dadbhai Naoroji to the House of Commons.
Later, Prakasam Pantulu returned to India and joined the fight against the popular Simon Commission of the British Raj. His gutsy and daring battle won him the title of Andhra Kesari (the Lion of Andhra).
Post the country’s independence, Prakasam visited Hyderabad to form the Hyderabad State Praja Party and made sure that all the sitting ministers of the then Congress Party were defeated. On the 1st of October, 1953, the state of Andhra was created and Tanguturi Prakasam Pantulu was declared as the Chief Minister for Andhra Pradesh in a unanimous voice.
A true people’s leader, fighter and a doting son of Motherland, Andhra Kesari left us a significant freedom to live in. He will always be remembered as one of the founding fathers and leaders of Andhra.