The writer is an author and lawyer based in Mumbai

KS Sastry: An eminent Gandhian

Published Dec 18, 2016, 5:21 am IST
Updated Dec 18, 2016, 6:05 am IST
On December 8, Sastry was hospitalised and he breathed his last five days later.
K.S. Sastry
 K.S. Sastry

K.S. Sastry, the 94-year-old Gandhian who passed away on last Tuesday night, was active till he sustained a hip fracture on November 18. He had celebrated his 95th birthday on November 16 by presenting scholarship amounts to poor students and financial aid to those in distress. His noble wife Ramanamma was throughout a source of strength and support and together they founded a charitable trust for serving the poor.

On December 8, Sastry was hospitalised and he breathed his last five days later. The fair complexioned and handsome Sastry was always energetic, seldom complaining about old-age infirmities. In the ’40s of the last century emerged a small group of popular young socialists led by P.V.G. Raju, the late Maharaja of Viziana-garam. Kandala Subrah-manya Tilak, now in his late 90s, Kolluru Satyanarayana Sastry (K.S. Sastry) and Bhattam Sriramamurthi were among its active members. Sastry became a trade union leader, later a Gandhian. As a freedom-fighter, he spent two years in Alipore jail. He and late Dr Digumarti Gopala-swamy founded the Gandhi Centre in 1985 and Sastry was its founder-secretary. He also founded the Kasturba Read-ing Room in Vizianagaram.

 

Sastry was widely respected not only by Gandhians but also by a large number of people in Andhra Pradesh. Several youngsters also came under his influence and the Members of India Youth for Society, a local outfit, attended on him day and night during Sastry’s illness. That the younger generation came under his influence made the Gandhian particularly happy in the last days of his life. Sastry lived a long life, a life of purpose and fulfilment.

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