The Mahaan Elastic Buddhijeevi Of The Year is…

S.S. KARNADSHA writes from Bangalore: It’s not even the middle of November and the TV channels are already into their annual ritual of soliciting votes for the Indian Of The Year. But Karnataka, after all the political tamasha it has seen in recent weeks, should consider voting for the Mahaan Elastic Buddhijeevi Of The Year.

I am no leftwing limpet to suggest the predictable, but let me throw up one extremely over-qualified “secular” name for the crown: U.R. Anantha Murthy. Once, “One of the 50 most important people in the country,” according to the now-defunct Illustrated Weekly of India; now one of the 500 most self-important people in Dollar Colony.

Reason One: Because like Deve Gowda we cannot believe anything he says any longer

Only the other day we saw URA march with his secular siblings (Girish Karnad, Devanur Mahadeva et al) to meet the Governor Rameshwar Thakur; to urge His Excellency not to allow the “unholy re-marriage” to take place between the BJP and JDS. He said, among many other things, that the “lust of power” had made people disinterested in democracy. That this was a “shameless and immoral” coalition. Etc.

URA wanted the Assembly dissolved. He used even more lethal terms on live television, but this should suffice to build my case.

The “chamchameleon” changed colours just 24 hours before B.S. Yediyurappa took oath as the first BJP CM in the South. Suddenly, URA started counselling the government on what to do and what not to do. The politically correct inanities that he has been spouting are inconsequential here.

My simple question is: if this is an “immmoral” and “shameless” coalition why should he even waste his time advising it? What has forced him to quickly, quietly and inexplicably alter his stance?

The secret agenda of the BJP and RSS is well known. Shouldn’t we ask URA what his secret agenda is?

“Cheddyurappa” says he wants ‘rajarishis’ around to guide him. Is URA aiming to become one?

What’s the point if our buddhijeevis like our pudharis, seem to think that, like in politics, there are no permanent enemies or permanent friends in the intellectual space?

Reason Two: Because he outrages our very sense of morality with his words and deeds

Some research scholar should study all the statements URA has been making in the media, say, since circa 2000. My choice of year is not an arbitrary one; that’s around the time the NDA government was getting its feet wet in Delhi. And it provides some perspective on his current posturing on the BJP coming to power in Karnataka.

URA, as everyone and his uncle knows, has a great knack of cosying up to people in power, regardless of their past and ideological colour. Nothing wrong, maybe. But one expects a writer to treat words sacredly and to weigh them before use. However with the books long dried up, the only use he seems to have for words is to pimp them to procure proximity to power.

Sans any conviction, he has perfected the art of using words to massage egos across the ideological spectrum sans any compunction.

When the Janata Dal was on the ascendant, he chavi maroed Ramakrishna Hegde into becoming vice-chancellor of the Mahatma Gandhi University in Kottayam. When S.M. Krishna was in charge, he flagged off his Cauvery pada yatra. When Dharam Singh came in, he managed to get Bangalore’s name twisted to weasel out of the classical language tangle he had got into with D. Javare Gowda.

He speaks of Ram Manohar Lohia and Gopala Gowda when it suits him; he praises the champion of Ayodhya, Vishwesha Teertha Swamiji, when it serves him; and he goes with a begging bowl to Sonia Gandhi and H.D. Deve Gowda when he wants his political ambitions satisfied.

So, true to form, in circa 2000, under the BJP-led NDA regime and under the ministership of the lady who later wanted to tonsure her head if Sonia had become PM, URA accepted the chairmanship of the Film and Television Institute of India in Poona, although he had no particular expertise in films or television.

So, if he could grab a crumb of office thrown by the BJP-led NDA, what is so objectionable about a BJP-led JDS coalition?

We cannot question his desire or ability to make friends across the political spectrum, of course. And maybe in some people’s books, that may be an admirable quality. But do traits like integrity, self-respect, dignity not count for anything in the insatiable quest for whatever it is that URA is seeking?

Reason Three: Because he finds it so easy and convenient to forget when it suits him

If you are still not convinced about URA’s intellectual elasticity, let me present to you his article on the op-ed page of Vijaya Karnataka (13 November 2007).

First the choice of media vehicle: Not Praja Vani or Udayavani or Samyukta Karnataka or Kannada Prabha, but VK, the paper published by The Times of India whose translated Kannada edition he had called “enjillu patrike“, and the paper that had launched a rabid tirade against him when he spoke against S.L. Bhyrappa‘s Aavarana, and shamed him through the columns of Pratap Simha.

URA had then run away from the battlefield and made a vow never to participate in public functions. But the fear of oblivion, or even the self-advertised threat of it, makes people do strange things.

Then the content of the opinion itself: In the very opening paragraph, he seems to cleverly suggest that one need not be unduly worried about the BJP-JDS re-alliance because it is only a transfer of the CM’s post; it is not as if the entire government has changed. It is the same government that we have seen and accepted in the last 20 months, he says.

In the third para he argues that he would have had nothing to comment had the “transfer of power” taken place smoothly. And—surprise, surprise—he speaks of the “trickery” of the Congress in Delhi.

This is a classic case of running with the pseudo-secular hares and hunting with the pseudo-national hounds. And this is a URA hallmark—to forget his own views on a subject, even if he had articulated them as recently as a week ago.

And to arrogantly expect people not to remember or to hold him to account for it.

So, like day follows night, around the time of Yediyurappa’s swearing-in on November 12, after all the bad-mouthing, Anantha Murthy was on ETV-Kannada answering questions. What was the dire compulsion to be grandstanding after all the pontificating?

To use dissent and opposition as an instrument to negotiate and share power? To ensure that his recommendation letters don’t reach the dustbin under the new dispensation, irrespective of however long it survives? To work on his Shimoga connection to get close to Yediyurappa?

Reason Four: Because like Deve Gowda he has become a hit and run artist

Most human beings depend on oxygen to survive. At the wise age of 75, Anantha Murthy seems to have discovered that the oxygen of publicity is enough. Is there a subject that he hasn’t weighed in on in recent times?

Somebody please remind me: which is the longest time URA has fought for a particular cause with the same degree of consistency of views?

Granted, the septuagenarian at least has the steel in his frame to stand up and be counted when most buddhijeevis half his age prefer the horizontal position (no, not that one). But there is such a thing as stamina and lasting the course and seeing the issue through (think Medha Patkar) even if it ends in defeat.

URA, however, like a rebel in search of a cause, is happy to flee to the next headline-grabbing issue and flit around till the next headline-grabbing issue comes along.

Perhaps he has to take lessons in steadfast consistency of views from the bhadralok in West Bengal—from Mahashweta Devi, Sumit Sarkar, Aparna Sen, Shanka Ghosh and others—who are fighting the CPM’s tyranny in Nandigram.

Anyway, in the last couple of paras of the aforementioned VK article, URA speaks in the garb of an ordinary citizen, but his sense of self-importance shines through. He is in love with his own voice and turn of phrase.

Why has URA suddenly become so conscious of the mining issue and the plurality question? Have they not been in the headlines long enough for him to launch a movement against them? Is he introducing them in the article only to engineer ‘balance’ and ‘credibility’ to his voice?

You wonder. And, then again, you wonder.

Reason Five: Because he has become as opportunistic as the politicians he despises

In an interview in the Deepavali special issue (9 November 2007) of Vikranta Karnataka, URA waxes eloquent about Mahatma Gandhi. And there are occasions where URA seems to place himself on a par with the Mahatma through the tone he adopts. But that’s just my personal opinion and I may be wrong.

In the interview, he says that his thoughts are now “purer than ever” (an admission of some past guilt?). The pow-wow veers as it must to the what’s in store if the BJP comes to power. The question is about Baba Budangiri and H.N. Ananth Kumar‘s brag that the BJP would turn it into Datta Peeta if voted to power with a majority.

Instead of focussing on the question and all its grave implications, URA responds: “H.D. Kumaraswamy said that it was Ananth Kumar who had prevented Yediyurappa from becoming CM. Besides fighting to save Baba Budangiri, we should fight people like Ananth Kumar who cheat people within their own party.”

What is URA foregrounding here? Why is he feigning to believe Kumaraswamy completely? Why should he be interested in the internal politics of BJP when such a large issue of majority communalism has been raised by the interviewer? Why has he to fight Yediyurappa’s cause?

In the same interview, URA also admits that he had told H.D. Deve Gowda and the Congress before the 2004 general elections to put him up as a joint candidate from Bangalore South against Ananth Kumar. So, clearly between Ananth Kumar and Yediyurappa, his choice is the latter.

How then is URA’s opportunism different from that of any other politician? Different masks for different folks?

Photo courtesy: Outlook


Also read: ‘Who’s Anantha Murthy? What’s his contribution?’

‘URA should stop preaching, start writing’

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35 Responses to “The Mahaan Elastic Buddhijeevi Of The Year is…”

  1. dr ramesh Says:

    ability to adapt is the hallmark of an intellectual. he should respond to everchanging,dynamic socio-political situation.

  2. S Says:


    Write some books and achieve something before slandering one of the greatest writers of modern Kannada literature. He is unquestionably of the best modern writers. Write something yourself before slandering him in this disgraceful way. He is a proud son of Karnataka-one of the proudest.

  3. armugam Says:

    thanks for knighting URA with a new title. he should henceforth be refererred to as SIR U R Ananthamurthy, MEB.
    churumuri should make it a practice to give this title at an annual online convocation. this year done. next year who?

  4. Kamalesh Says:

    This is in response to “S”s comments above.

    A person is always remembered for his deeds and not his/her books with horribly twisted ‘Indian history’.

    Pseudo secular URA surely is. Don’t doubt. One may read other books as well along with URA’s and see which is more logical (with proof).

  5. Shiva with ananda Says:

    I appreciate the article written by the author. I fully accept his words.

    URA should be realize what he is, is he a writer or intellect or social worker etc. then act accordingly.
    He then should be congruent and consitent in what ever he says and does.

    In my school days I used like him after reading his book(of course he has only one famous book) and his articles. Then later I realized this man says everyday diffrent things.

    I understand of integrity means “being one in thought, speech and action”.
    I do not feel URA no better than any politician of our day.

  6. Pulikeshi the Last Says:

    Piggybacking on Kamalesh’s view, I offer this observation: A reader is a reader. A book or anything of that nature does not exist apart from its audience. It makes little sense to demand that readers themselves write books before criticising this or that author.

    URA is our champion athlete in matters relative to writing and reaching the top of any ladder he chooses to climb. Look at the list of his accomplishments compiled by Karnadsha (an interesting and suggestive pseudonym if I ever saw one). Add to the list: Head of the Department of English, Mysore U; visiting professor of Kannada at Bangalore U; stints abroad as a Commonwealth Scholar and visiting scholar; Chairman of the Kendriya Sahithya Academy, Padma Vibheeshana (pun intended). His admirers promoted him a few years ago as a possible contender for the Nobel in literature. Pratibha Nandakuar amusingly wrote in Kannadaprabha about an incident–possibly apocryphal–in which she witnessed URA perambulating around the Swedish Academy Office in Stockholm, lugging copies of his works, especially the translated ones.

    It hurts to thinkthat someone as gifted as URA would stoop to getting the perpetually inebriated J. H. Patel to grant him government housing (I hear he owns residences in Mysore as well as Udupi). It hurts that he is not angered by the actions of anybody as long as that person is in power. It hurts that he has not invested his extraordinary national network connections in the cause of Karnataka and Kannada. For him “Bharatheeyathe” is far more important than “Kannadathwa.” Thus the Gokak movement was mob hysteria. Kannada need not vye with Tamil for recognition. What does it matter what the definition of a classical language is, although it is true that in linguistics traditionally Greek, Latin, and Sanskrit are characterized thus beause they are no longer spoken? What has he done to enable Kannada U in Hampi take off, an enterprise that has been struggling to toddle since its establishment?

    The “Aavarana” incident clearly brought to light the extraordinary burden of contradictions he has to bear. A man given to championing objective criticism, he took part in a supposed discussion-release party of Shankar’s univil and boorish booklet damning Bhyrappa. He misused the occasion to pay off an old score–Bhyrappa’s satirical portrait of him in “Bhiththi.” It is anybody’s guess that he would not have been asked to show up if he had not indicated in advance his plan to denounce Bhyrappa as a non-writer. The full-text of his vitriolic sermon on how the book supposedly harms the cause of one beautiful Bharath was published in many media outlets. Yet he claimed that he had been misinterpreted by journalists (they are OK when they help keep him in the limelight by playing up anything he says) and declared that he would take part in no public discussion of literature if there were journalists milling around. Yet was it a month ago that he was the chief guest at a to-do where D. Nagabushan’s most reent book was released in Shimoga? Not too long ago, he swore his allegiance to the Congress and Commnists. Is it just a coincidence that they together wield power in Delhi?

    URA is unquestionably one of the greats in Kannada fiction and perhaps, to a certain extent, in Kannada literary criticism. Even V. S. Naipaul has taken note of his accomplishments. URA’s encouragement of young writers is legendary. He has made time to write at least two hundred “munnudis” and “hinnudis” for aspiring writers’ books regardless of the indifferent quality of some of those products. His students at Maharaja’s College and Manasa Gangotri remember him as an unfailingly polite and informed teacher who did not feel uncomfortable with using Kannada during lectures in that foolish bastion of anglophile pretenstions, the English Department. Already in the seventies he was boldly making a case for letting students whose English was shaky (whose wasn’t?) to write the M. A. English exams in Kannada.

    I write these lines more in sorrow than in anger. Why would someone gifted with a gigantic intellect like URA harbor in himself a character that would bend and crawl to receive a favor, a morsel from scoundrel politicians when he can have a feast of his own, on his terms? Is this the reason intelligent, sensitive Kannadigas do not erupt in joy when he starts wearing a newly begged peta or sport a new shawl that displays more holes of lack of self-respect than threads of dignity?

    URA is a tragedy unfolding in front of our eyes. Generally, in life as well as literature, a tragic protagonist never has a chance to redeem himself and become the powerhouse of life enhancement he could have been.

  7. Sunil Urs Says:

    The author hasnt mentioned a word about URA’s writing ability. Nor is the article a review of his literay work. The author has merely questioned URA’s frequent change of stance on recent social and political issues. Guess we should focus on that.

  8. Ashwini Says:

    The writer of this article should be given a prize for selective referencing and quoting out of context. So far it has been NRN. Now URA……..It is only the question of time before a super secular intellectual dishing out the sweet-and-sour concoction calls Gandhiji names a la Pratap Simha and Vishweshwara Bhat. Churmuri is increasingly getting more sour and less sweet. Churmuri prepared without a sense of proportion is going to taste really horrible. If some people continue to relish it, the problem is with their taste buds
    As a caveat to some responses that the above lines might evoke, please note that I am an OBC….

  9. Pavitra Says:

    The author is plainly biased. URA wrote this ‘questionable’ article was first published in Udayavani. It was sent to all newspapers (at least ones I know of received them) but only Udayavani and a day later VK published it. A newspaper is a public space and there is no point in an author boycotting it when his primary objective is to reach out to as many people as possible rather than waging a war with it or its ideologically-blinded columnists. If the secular papers have chosen not to publish it and VK has published it, there is nothing new in it. Thats why VK could gallop ahead of the secular counterparts, carrying aloft the safron flag. I really do not understand the author’s argument that URA should not have sent the article to VK. For example, Outlook might write bitterly about a politician but the politician will have no choice but to speak to it if he wanted to be heard and seen in public.

  10. Doddi Buddi Says:


    Your views are valid. Please don’t spoil it by mentioning your caste affiliations. Thank you.

  11. Rohit Says:

    S.S. KARNADSHA seems to have some personal grudge with URA and took it out in a very long letter (I will not call it an article). Every line it in seems to have be written in a very desperate mood and reflects his/her personal opinion a lot. My question is why would Churmuri entertain such frustrated people to write. I do not find even right occasion to talk about URA. He is not even in recent news. Stupid people like S.S. Karnadsha will drive away all the good kannadigas outside the state. There should be laws against bad writing on important people.

    We kannadigas should unite and respect our icons and ourselves. If we do not respect our own genius people then who will respect us?? Every kannada son respects URA. Every intellect could have an understanding that is not 100% correct. But, no one in world is absolute truth, except God.

  12. gaby Says:

    There isnt any doubt that URA is an opportunist- big time. But did we need this long diatribe to remind us of this. In any case is there anybody who can honestly claim to do things in a purely altruistic spirit. While criticism and ridiculing can be seriously funny making an obsession out of it makes it seem like sour grapes.

  13. tarlesubba Says:

    namm kannaDdalli ad hominem antaaralla hange.

  14. SP Says:

    It’s so easy to pick few comments of URA and write something like this..You have decided that URA is a “chamchameleon” and started collecting evidence to prove your points..
    URA didn’t want the Govt to be formed.He thought election would be better. What’s wrong if he expresses his views how the new Govt should funtion!

  15. anitakka Says:

    pavitra. please get your facts right, don’t be a coterie chamcha.

    we kannadigas never asked ananthamurthy or any writer to boycott newpapers and public space. it was ura who ran away said he does not want to participate in public functions where the media would be present. instead of giving churumuri readers gyan, give your guru some gyan. when praja vani does not publish him, it is surprising that two cheddi publications like udaya vani and vk publish him. the secular kannadigas should be reminded the role udayavani played before, during and after mangalore riots. i used to work in mangalore at that time and felt ashamed of what some newspapers were doing.

  16. pragmatic Says:

    good one! clearly shows what URA is. It is also not a secret how he got JnanapeeTha award. Pu ti na was supposed to get the award that year. But Mr. swarthi – URA got it for himself by praising the then government like anything. When that government came down and the opposition party came to power, he started praising it and its naayaki!

    and I do not think he is a great writer. he is a good writer, thats it. A writer who cannot respect his colleague.

    i also believe that he has the right to comment on anything and everything as we all have. But going to the Governor and pressurizing him for not to invite BJP for government formation, was uncalled for.

    when he criticised what happened in Gujarat, why cant he do the same now for Nandigram?
    bottomline: ati neecha buddhiyuLLa laddi-jeevi – ee Anantamoorti!

  17. Aatmasakshi Says:

    What do we expect of a writer and public intellectual? Should he/she just write and keep quiet on all other issues and live a life of anonomyity? Or should he/she write and take part in all the other burning issues of the day? URA, whether we like it or not, has clearly chosen the latter route, and we must salute it him for his intellectual courage and stamina.

    The real question that this article raises is whether a public intellectual should stick to his views and stands come hell or high water and risk alienating himself. Or whether he should move with the tide and swing with the breeze and shift and change his stance as he deems fit?

    Quite clearly this is not a debate on URA’s literary skills. Because when URA stands up and speaks for or against something, he is not putting up his authorial abilities for display. On the contrary, he is using the stature that his writing has fetched him for what he thinks is the greater common good.

    On that front, URA’s contribution is immense and he is an invaluable, but his consistency is clearly questionable. In the long run, this can only affect his credibility and ability to be an agent of change. Do we see Chomsky or Zinn or Hitchens changing their position depending on who comes to power?

  18. tarlesubba Says:

    i get very uncomfortable about people who donot change their position–very talibanesque. i would rather people evolve and if that evolution takes them in circles then so be it.

    idealogy is nothing. it is not reality.

    having said that, there is a definite value to perspectives. if you are interested and need to know for whatever reason, then the karat view is as important as the shourie view.

    for “users” it works out fine, but about karat and shourie themselves? don’t they need to know also? especially because they power to influence? how good is for such people to be ideologues?

    then, i read that article in question before i read this one. i did not get the same ideas as the writer of this one. then again, perhaps i may be naive. but i have thought about his prescription about mines since.

    i see nothing wrong in what URA says about mines.
    #1. mining is non-renewable and results in major deformation.
    #2. minerals are finite and resources that we have borrowed from future generations.
    #3. it is in no way benefiting KA directly even right now. bellary has a lot of helipads but not roads, and trucks laden with ore are causing major problems for all cities and towns and their infrastructure on their way to mangalore. there are no indications that it has resulted in large scale employment or betterment of conditions of those employed in it.
    #4. it has muddied KA and AP politics and developed deep undesirable nexuses.
    #5. lemme pull authority here, churumuri has posted an article with similar arguments about brain drain. well atleast it is renewable and has meant something for the country. what has mining meant for the district in real terms, forget KA and IN?

  19. Protima Konar Says:

    Its a intra fight between (psuedo) secularists.

    Author talks about: “Mahashweta Devi, Sumit Sarkar, Aparna Sen, Shanka Ghosh”.

    Sakha Ghosh= he is NOT Buddhijeevi, he is Buddha-jeevi (who propagates polemic of Buddhadev- WB’s CM)

    Sumit Sarkar is a card carrying member of a political party (CPI). He is not Buddhijeevi, he should be called Marx-jeevi.

    Aparna Sen= after glamor.

    Only Mahashweta Devi is consistent.

    Protima Konar/Kolkata/Connecticut

  20. tarlesubba Says:

    yeah i heard aparna sen on ibn
    went on and on about intellectuals artistes and painters (IAP). she built up a lot of anger against buddha. buddha this buddha that IAP, then shogarika ghosh asked if buddha should resign. she started of with ‘depends, who will replace him’ added IAP in between, finally meandered in to a qualified yes. i switched off.

  21. tarlesubba Says:

    that programme was a nice little bong fest with everybody rolling their a’s and s’s. aporno shen shogarika and so on. nothing wrong with, only wish they extend such sensibilities to all other cultures too. in the very same programme, in the midst of this oh-me-so-bengoli act, mrs ghosh contorted yedi’s name. yoydrooyrappa or something, if it were not for the image in the background i would have never known she was talking of ol’ yedi. then we have the natak about karnatak and de-ve goDa no he is not the godly horse, he be the godly tiller daevae gauDa as in gauDiya.

  22. tksbhat Says:

    ಕಾರ್ನಾಡ್ ಶಾ ಅವರು ಮಾತನಾಡೋದು ನೋಡಿದರೆ ಅನಂತಮೂರ್ತಿ ಹುಟ್ಟಿರೋದೆ ತಪ್ಪು ಅನ್ಸುತ್ತೆ. ಮತ್ತೊಬ್ಬರು ಕನ್ಸಿಸ್ಸ್ಟೆನ್ಸಿ ಬಗ್ಗೆ ಮಾತಾಡ್ತಾರೆ. ಅಂದರೆ ತಾನು ಹಿಡಿದ ಮೊಲಕ್ಕೆ ಮೂರೇ ಕಾಲು ಅಂತ ಸದಾ ಸಾಧಿಸುತ್ತಿರಬೇಕೇ?

    ಗಣಿಗಾರಿಕೆ, ಕೋಮುವಾದ, ಕನ್ನಡ ಮುಂತಾದ ವಿಷಯಗಳ ಬಗ್ಗೆ ಅನಂತಮೂರ್ತಿ ತಮ್ಮ ನಿಲುವು ಬದಲಾಯಿಸಿದ್ದು ನನಗಂತೂ ಕಾಣಿಸಿಲ್ಲ. ಇನ್ನು ಸಿದ್ಧ ಆರೋಪಗಳಿಗೆ ಎವಿಡೆನ್ಸ್ ಹುಡುಕುವವರನ್ನು ಏನನ್ನುವುದು?

    ಕೆಲ ಕಾಲದ ಹಿಂದೆ ಯುವ ಲೇಖಕರೊಬ್ಬರು ಅನಂತಮೂರ್ತಿ ಸಾಹಿತ್ಯದ ಸೂಳೆಗಾರಿಕೆ ಮಾಡುತ್ತಾರೆ ಎಂದಿದ್ದನ್ನು ಕೇಳಿದ ಮತ್ತೊಬ್ಬ ಮಾಜಿ ಯುವ ಲೇಖಕ ಪ್ರತಿಕ್ರಿಯಿಸಿದ್ದು ಹೀಗೆ-ಹಾಗೆ ಹೇಳಿದೋನ ಅಪ್ಪ ತಲೆ ಹಿಡೀತಿದ್ದ!

  23. V.R.ANIL KUMAR Says:

    More than anything else, he is politically so naive that he doesn’t know whether he is coming or going.He should stick to writing.

  24. E Raviraja Gowda T V Says:

    Note anitakka
    mangalore riots were fuelled by dirty eveningers of Mangalore, not cheddi papers…
    and udupi almost went into riots due to publishing of a naked photo of hajabba by Bangalore own Kannadaprabha!
    check for more info

  25. Pavitra Says:

    Akka kele Anithakka

    I do not dispute the facts that you have sought to clarify. My point was in response to Karnadsha’s question why URA chose to publish in VK of all the newspapers? I only said the question itself is not relevant considering that the article was sent to all newspapers.
    I am aware of the fact that URA did publicly declare that he would not participate in any functions where the media persons were present in the wake of the VK’s sustained efforts to malign him. I am also aware that he did change this stand later….and if this was the ground on which Karnadsha attacked URA I have no issues. However, the kind of venom that Karnadsha’s biased and half-baked analysis spews is grossly disproportional to some of the seemingly unstable stands URA has taken……
    about your personal accusation that i am a chamcha and URA is my guru, all that i want to say is that I do not know him personally, nor am I big enough for him to know me. He is my guru in the sense that i have read some of his novels and writings….have appreciated his concerns on certain issues. My only point is that in a society where intellectuals silently and conveniently watch the political excesses few who do not mind being loners in challenging such excesses should not be demonised on some silly grounds and that is what i think karnadsha has done deliberately or indavertently….
    Finally, about Udayavani. For me Udayavani, especially its Manipal edition is not even a newspaper but a newsletter but i do not agree it is a cheddy paper like VK. Its proprietors might wear cheddies but would not mind removing it discretely when they see the cheddi pockets empty. Udayavani will not do anything in the cause of secularism but at the same time it would nothing to promote communalism as its sole concern is to protect its revenue – and it firmly believes that money has no colours. As regards the secularism of Kannadigas that you are proudly proclaiming, all that i want to say is that it is the secularism of Kannadigas which has catapulted what you yourself have called chaddi paper to number 1 position and made chaddi columnists heroes……

  26. Pulikeshi the Last Says:

    Although the stuff discussed here is about URA and not to him, I wonder if he casts a quick eye on these epistles to see how others see him.

  27. Yashica Says:

    @ dr ramesh: “ability to adapt is the hallmark of an intellectual. he should respond to everchanging,dynamic socio-political situation.”

    @ Tarle Subba: “I get very uncomfortable about people who donot change their position–very talibanesque. i would rather people evolve and if that evolution takes them in circles then so be it.”

    This is all very well to say and pretty logical. But how many times is a buddhijeevi allowed to change his position on any one issue? The crown of buddhijeevi doesn’t sit lightly. If a buddhijeevi changes his stand as often as the guy standing at a tea shop reading the morning newspaper, then he ceases to be a buddhijeevi. He becomes the guy standing at a tea shop reading morning newspaper.

  28. tarlesubba Says:

    why wear a crown to begin with?

    if a buddhijeevi cannot change his position even when it is clear that his position is not tenable and unreal, even then he fails to be a buddhijeevi. especially when he continues to peddle dogma under the weight of the crown, which he finds is too heavy to discard his position and see things clearly.

    what distinguishes a buddhijeevi from a tea angaDi newspaper reader is that B has knowledge of theories and trends and is thus equipped to place things “historically”. however, in most cases, the tea angaDi newspaper reader’s attitude might not be that bad at all !! for example it makes it easier for him to take things on their own merit, rather than imposing theories on the issues, while the buddhijeevi is stuck in trying to retrofit it to theories.

    what are theories man? why are you beholden to them?

  29. s v rao Says:

    Whatever others may say I find Karnadsha a polemicist of a high order. This country needs more such people. The rich, powerful and famous should not be spared. If some feel that the criticism is in excess, why do they not speak about the excess publicity that Mr. Ananthamurthy gets. The culture of pamphleteering is a dead art, social movements across the world have had great polemicists and pamphleteers. Churumuri you are doing a good job. I am sure you are bunch of young people with a healthy mind. All the best.

  30. Dinesh Says:

    Reason 1. No contradiction between the fact that he wanted the assembly to be dissolved and that he started advising the new government on what to do and not do. He wanted the dissolution since he did not want the BJP’s brand of communal politics to happen here. He advised the new government on the same issue – not to start playing communal politics with Datta Peetha and other issues.

    Reason 2. Proof for all this chavi maro’ing? Janata Dal and Kottayam VC’ship – how are they related? S M Krishna and a pada yatra – what concrete gain accrued to him? Why was Dharam Singh need to weasel out of the tangle. Begging bowl trips – what accrued again? More information/proof please. Yes, he should have declined the FTII chairmanship if offered by the BJP to him – but is that how it works? I don’t know – but would give the benefit of doubt to the author.

    Reason 3. Choice of VK already dealt with ably by a previous commenter. Two insinuations in two paragraphs – is that all the author has? What did the rest of the article talk about? And why is answering questions on ETV-Kannada so bad – did he declare undying love for the BJP while doing it? More info please.

    Reason 4. Comparing him to a professional protester like Medha Patkar is a bit unfair.

    Reason 5. Maybe there’s a point – let’s see the love affair developing more before we jump to accusations of opportunism.

    URA maybe all that the author of the post says he is, but such sloppily written articles will not convince many.


  31. Oduga Says:

    Why take URA seriously who has a split personality. I think he needs to maintain silence and review himself before his fans lose interest in him.

  32. Anonymous Says:

    Good to note that churumuri is writing anti-communist and anti-supporters of communist articles. But seriously, such “character-assasination” kind of articles with insinuations galore with no proof are hardly what give credence to churumuri. The article is more in the nature of what would appear in a sleazy tabloid – sensationalism.

    Do critique people, but dont “character-assassinate”. But let the critic have the guts to atleast publish his real name.

  33. TS Satyan Says:


  34. Sathya Says:

    Life teaches all arts. To survive one has to play many tricks. Even a snake charmer with his mixed language captivates the onlookers. Everybody would be eagerly awaiting as to what he says. Similaraly intellectuals play their tricks. When they have to open their mouth they don’t do it, when they have to keep quiet they yawn and open their mouth. People who are not every much educated look at these people with respect. After one or two such utterings they will be able to assess and then they don’t give much credence to these intellectuals. But they have a wonderful knack of making use of the oppurtunity. Karnataka people have not forgotten how the same author went to see the padayatre of SMK. It is their samskara.

  35. twistleton Says:

    well written post.

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