ಅನಕೃ ಮತ್ತು ಕನ್ನಡ ಚಳವಳಿಯ ಆರಂಭ


ಇಸವಿ ೧೯೬೨ ಏಪ್ರಿಲ್ ತಿಂಗಳು ಕನ್ನಡ ನಾಡಿನ ಇತಿಹಾಸದಲ್ಲಿ ಸುವರ್ಣಾಕ್ಷರದಲ್ಲಿ ಬರೆದಿಡಬೇಕಾದ್ದು. ಅದು ಬೆಂಗಳೂರಿನ ರಾಮನವಮಿ ಸಂದರ್ಭ. ಹಲವಾರು ಸಂಘ ಸಂಸ್ಥೆಗಳು ಕನ್ನಡ ಕಲಾವಿದರನ್ನು ಕಡೆಗಣಿಸಿ ಸತತ ೨೦-೩೦ ದಿನಗಳು ಸಂಗೀತ ಕಛೇರಿಗಳನ್ನು ಏರ್ಪಡಿಸುವ ವಾಡಿಕೆ. ಹೀಗೇ ಹಲವಾರು ವರ್ಷಗಳು ನಡೆದುಕೊಂಡು ಬಂದಿದ್ದು ಈ ಕೃತ್ಯಗಳನ್ನು ನೋಡಿ ನೋಡಿ ಹಲವು ಕಾಳಗಗಳ ಕಲಿ ಅನಕೃ ಅವರಿಗೆ ರೋಸಿ ಹೋಗಿತ್ತು. ಏನಾದರೂ ಮಾಡಿ ಈ ವ್ಯಾಧಿ ನಿರ್ಮೂಲನ ಮಾಡಲೆಂದೇ ಆರಂಭಿಸಿದ್ದು ಕನ್ನಡ ಚಳವಳಿ.

ಈ ಕನ್ನಡಿಗರ ಮನೋಭಾವದ ವಿರುದ್ಧ ಆರಂಭವಾಗಿದ್ದು ಸಾಂಕೇತಿಕವಾಗಿ ಗಾನ ಶಾರದೆ, ಸಂಗೀತ ವಿದುಶಿ ಎಂ.ಎಸ್. ಸುಬ್ಬುಲಕ್ಷ್ಮಿ ಸಂಗೀತ ಕಛೇರಿಯ ದಿನವೆ, ಪ್ರತಿಭಟನ ಮೆರವಣಿಗೆ, ಕಪ್ಪು ಬಾವುಟ ಪ್ರದರ್ಶನದೊಂದಿಗೆ. ಕನ್ನಡ ಕಲಾವಿದರನ್ನು ಕಡೆಗಣಿಸುತ್ತಿದ್ದು ಬರೀ ಪರಭಾಷ ಕಲಾವಿದರಿಗೆ ಪ್ರಾಶಸ್ತ್ಯ ನೀಡುತ್ತಿದ್ದುದೆ ಚಳವಳಿಗೆ ಕಾರಣವಾದರೂ ನಮ್ಮವರೆ ಆದ ಕೆಲವು ಕುಹಕಿಗಳು ಎಂ.ಎಸ್. ಸುಬ್ಬಲಕ್ಷ್ಮಿ ಅವರಿಗೆ ಅವಮಾನ ಮಾಡಲೆಂದು ನಡೆಸಿದ್ದೆ ಈ ಚಳವಳಿ ಎಂದು ಅಪಪ್ರಚಾರ ಮಾಡಲು ಹೇಸಲಿಲ್ಲ. ಈ ತಪ್ಪು ಕಲ್ಪನೆಯನ್ನು ಹೋಗಲಾಡಿಸಲು ಅನಕೃ ನೀಡಿದ ಪತ್ರಿಕಾ ಪ್ರಕಟನೆಗಳು, ಹೊರಡಿಸಿದ ಭಿತ್ತಿಪತ್ರಗಳು ಲೆಕ್ಕವಿಲ್ಲದಷ್ಟು.

ಕನ್ನಡಿಗರ ನಿರಭಿಮಾನ ಬರೀ ಸಂಗೀತ ಕ್ಷೇತ್ರಕ್ಕೆ ಮೀಸಲಾಗಿರಲಿಲ್ಲ ಇಂತದೆ ನಿರಭಿಮಾನ ಸಾಹಿತ್ಯ, ಚಲನಚಿತ್ರ ಹಾಗು ಇತರೆ ಲಲಿತ ಕಲೆಗಳ ಕ್ಷೇತ್ರಗಳನ್ನು ಆವರಿಸಿ ಹೆಮ್ಮರವಾಗಿ ಬೆಳೆದು ನಿಂತಿತ್ತು. ಇವುಗಳನ್ನೆಲ್ಲಾ ಕಂಡು ರೋಸಿದ್ದ ಅನಕೃ ಕನ್ನಡತನಕ್ಕೊಂದು ಕಾಯಕಲ್ಪ ನೀಡಲೆಂದೇ ಆರಂಭಿಸಿದ್ದು ಕನ್ನಡ ಚಳವಳಿ. ಅದರ ನಾಂದಿ ರೂಪವೇ ಶ್ರೀಮತಿ ಎಂ.ಎಸ್. ಸಂಗೀತ ಕಚೇರಿಯ ವಿರುದ್ಧ ಪ್ರತಿಭಟನೆ.

ಇದಕ್ಕೆಲ್ಲಾ ಪ್ರತಿಯಾಗಿ ನಮ್ಮವರೇ ಆದ ಕನ್ನಡಿಗರು “ಧ್ಯೇಯೋದ್ಧೇಶ ಏನೇ ಇದ್ದರೂ ಅನಕೃ ಹೀಗೆ ಮಾಡಬಾರದಿತ್ತು. ಈ ಮಟ್ಟಕ್ಕೆ ಇಳಿಯಬಾರದಿತ್ತು. ಮಹಾನ್ ಕಲಾವಿದೆ ಶ್ರೀಮತಿ ಎಂ.ಎಸ್. ಗೆ ಅವಹೇಳನ ಮಾಡಬಾರದಿತ್ತು”. “ಎಂ. ಎಸ್. ಗೆ ಕಲ್ಲೇಟು ಕನ್ನಡಿಗರಿಗೆ, ಕನ್ನಡ ನಾಡಿಗೇ ಅವಮಾನ” ಎಂದೆಲ್ಲಾ ಬೊಬ್ಬೆ ಹೊಡೆದಿದ್ದೇ ಹೊಡೆದದ್ದು. ಅಂದು ನಮ್ಮ ಕನ್ನಡ ಪತ್ರಿಕೆಗಳ ಮನೋಭಾವವು ಅದೇ ಆಗಿತ್ತು.

ಈ ಎಲ್ಲಾ ತಪ್ಪು ಕಲ್ಪನೆಗಳಿಗೆ ಪರದೆ ಬಿದ್ದಿದ್ದು ಮದರಾಸಿನಿಂದ ಶ್ರೀಮತಿ ಎಂ.ಎಸ್. ಸುಬ್ಬಲಕ್ಷ್ಮೀ ನೀಡಿದ್ದ ಪತ್ರಿಕಾ ಪ್ರಕಟಣೆ... “ಅ.ನ. ಕೃಷ್ೞರಾಯರನ್ನು ಹಿಂದಿನಿಂದ ಬಲ್ಲೆ. ಕಲಾವಿದರನ್ನು ಅವಹೇಳನ ಮಾಡುವ ಕೀಳು ಮನೋಭಾವ ಅವರಿಗೆಂದಿಗೂ ಇಲ್ಲ. ನನ್ನ ಕಛೇರಿಗೆ ಕಲ್ಲೇಟು ತೂರಲಿಲ್ಲ. ಕನ್ನಡಿಗರ ನಿಚ್ಛಳ ಗುರಿ ಸಾದನೆಗೆ ಅವರು ಪ್ರತಿಭಟನೆ ನಡೆಸಿದ್ದಾರೆ. ಇದರಲ್ಲಿ ನನಗೇನೂ ತಪ್ಪು ಕಾಣಿಸದು...” ಎಂಬ ಪತ್ರಿಕಾ ಹೇಳಿಕೆ ಕನ್ನಡ ಚಳವಳಿಯನ್ನು ಅವಹೇಳನ ಮಾಡುತ್ತಿದ್ದ ಎಷ್ಟೋ ಜನರ ಕಣ್ಣು ತೆರೆಸಿತು. ಇದೆಲ್ಲದರಿಂದಾಗಿ ಪತ್ರಿಕೆಗಳ [ಸ್ಥಳೀಯ] ಮನೋಭಾವವು ಬದಲಾಗುವ ಸೂಚನೆಗಳು ಕಂಡು ಬಂದವು.

ಈ ಸಂದರ್ಭದಲ್ಲೇ ಅನಕೃ ಅವರು ಕನ್ನಡ ಚಳವಳಿ ಸಂಯುಕ್ತ ರಂಗದ ಮಿತ್ರರ ಹೆಸರಿನಲ್ಲಿ ಕನ್ನಡ ಬಾರದವರಿಗೂ ಹಾಗು ಹೊರ ನಾಡವರಿಗೂ ನಮ್ಮ ಚಳವಳಿಯ ಧ್ಯೇಯೋದ್ದೇಶಗಳು ಪೂರ್ಣ  ಮನವರಿಕೆಯಾಗಲೆಂದೇ ಹೊರಡಿಸಿದ ಇಂಗ್ಲೀಷ್‌ನಲ್ಲೊಂದು ಭಿತ್ತಿಪತ್ರ ಹೊರಡಿಸಿದರು. [ಇದರ ನಕಲು ಕೆಳಕಂಡಂತೆ ಇದೆ]. ಒಕ್ಕಣೆ ಪೂರ ಅನಕೃ ಅವರದ್ದೇ. ಇದು ರಾಯರ ಇಂಗ್ಲೀಷ್ ಫ್ರೌಡಿಮೆಗೆ ಒಂದು ನಿದರ್ಶನ. 

"ಇಂದು ಏಕೀಕೃತ ಕರ್ನಾಟಕದ ಭಾವೈಕ್ಯಪಥದಲ್ಲಿ ಕನ್ನಡಿಗರು ಸಾಗುತ್ತಿದ್ದರೆ; ಅವರಲ್ಲಿ ಬಹುಕಾಲ ಸುಪ್ತವಾಗಿದ್ದ ಸ್ವಾಭಿಮಾನ ಜಾಗೃತವಾಗಿದ್ದರೆ; ಕನ್ನಡ ವಾಚಕರು ಅಗಣಿತವಾಗಿ ಬೆಳೆದಿದ್ದರೆ, ಕನ್ನಡ ಲೇಖಕರು ಗಣನೀಯವಾಗಿ ಹೆಚ್ಚಿದ್ದರೆ, ಕನ್ನಡ ನಾಡಿನ ಕರ್ನಾಟಕ ಸಂಗೀತಗಾರರು ನೆಮ್ಮದಿಯಿಂದಿದ್ದರೆ, ಕನ್ನಡ ಚಲನಚಿತ್ರ ಕಲಾವಿದರು ವೈಭವ ಜೀವನ ನಡೆಸುತ್ತಿದ್ದರೆ; ಒಟ್ಟಿನಲ್ಲಿ ಕನ್ನಡ ಕನ್ನಡಿಗರು ಭಾರತದ-ಅಷ್ಟೇಕೆ ಜಗತ್ತಿನ ದೃಷ್ಟಿಯಲ್ಲಿದ್ದರೆ ಇದಕ್ಕೆಲ್ಲ ಅನಕೃ ಬಹುಮಟ್ಟಿಗೆ ಕಾರಣರೆಂದರೆ ಅತ್ಯುಕ್ತಿಯಲ್ಲ."

ಈ ರಾಜ್ಯೋತ್ಸವದ ಸಂದರ್ಭಕ್ಕೆ ಅನಕೃ ಕಣ್ಮರೆಯಾಗಿ ಮೂವತ್ತು ವರ್ಷಗಳು ಕಳೆದಿದ್ದರೂ ಅವರ ನೆನಪು ಸದಾ ಹಸಿರು.

ಶ್ರೀ. ಬಿ.ಕೆ. ಅನಂತಸ್ವಾಮಿ, 
ಬೆಂಗಳೂರು - ೫೬೦೦೭೯.


United Front of Kannada Associations in Bangalore
206, Chikkanna Gardens, Bangalore -4

General Secretary: M. RAMA MURTHY, Editor: "Kannada Yuvajana"
Associate Secretaries: M. V. Subba RAO, M. V. VARADAIAH

Brother and sister artists, writers and publicists,

We write this to you following information that we are victims of a tirade engineered against us for the past four months by certain Tamil newspapers apparently as a "reply" to the healthy campaign we have sponsored for succoring Kannada artists.

It is a pity that our detractors have given an anti-Tamil color to this movement of ours. It is a greater pity that some of them have preferred to dub this as an auxiliary to the separatist movement launched by the D. M. K. in Madras State. We should like to declare categorically that we are averse to any kind of separatism and are always prepared to fight this tendency tooth and nail. We have never seen eye to eye with the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam and we don't propose to gang up with them.

All our movement stands for is to make the life of the average Kannadiga endurable and to create a respectable place for him in his own land. Surely, there is nothing reprehensible in this? We have programmed to prevail upon the State Government as the language of the courts and also as the medium of instruction in educational institutions and to rename the State as Karnataka.

You will surely agree that this is well within the bounds of rationalism and also that there is no vestige of hatred for any other linguistic group or State discernible anywhere in this programme.

It may well be asked why we have singled out an old institution like the Ramaseva Mandali in Bangalore for our attack on the cultural front. This needs some explanation. Just to give you a background, it was the late Sri Bidaram Krishnappa, doyen of Karnataka Music of the State, who first initiated the habit of inviting musicians from Tamilnad to the State and created a platform for them in his glorious institution, Sri Prasanna Sitarama Mandira, Mysore. It was also Sri Krishnappa who took the vidwans from Tamilnad to the Mysore Palace, then a haven for all cultural giants, and got them palace honours. No less a man than His Highness Sri Krishnaraja Wodeyar, of revered memory, presided over these "vidwathsabhas" and suitably honored the visiting virtuosi. We are sure that this service done by the late Sri Krishnappa to his brother artistes is too precious to be so easily forgotten.

Another doyen, the late Sri Tiger Varadachariar, spent a good number of years of his fruitful life in Mysore and readily reciprocated Sri Krishnappa's fine gesture and introduced a large number of Mysore musicians to Tamilnad. These, indeed, were days one would fondly cherish in one' memory.

But, to the dismay of everybody interested in healthy inter-State cultural relations, after the demise of the late Sri Krishnappa, the Gayana Samaj of Bangalore preferred a step-motherly attitude towards local artists flouting the noble traditions set up by the two doyens. The local artist became a pariah in the Samaja and the subsequent office-bearers of the institution faithfully took up the strings of this unfortunate hate-campaign.

While this happened in Bangalore, it found its echo in the Prasanna Sitarama Mandira at Mysore also.

These two institutions then found a blind follower in the Ramaseva Mandali of Chamarajpet, Bengalore, a tiny group of people who started conducting music performances during the Ramanavami season in a small way. This institution took upon itself to throw every Kannada artist overboard. Quite naturally, this suicidal policy adopted by this commercial-minded organisation run in the name of art provoked the wrath of the local press and music-lovers alike and strong resentment of this attitude poured into the press in a stream. When, in his presidential address at the 42nd Kannada Sahitya Sammelana in Udupi in December 1960, Sri A. N. Krishna Rao, a famed Kannada writer and a member of our advisory board, made a pointed reference to this organised affront to Kannada art, the press widely hailed him. This show of righteous indignation came to a logical culmination when, at a conference of Bangalore Kannadigas, one of the most successful conferences convened in the city in recent years, a strongly-worded resolution was passed crying halt to the policy persued by the Mandali, which, incidentally, has now grown into a big money-making cultural organisation.

We requested the Mandali and similar institutions not to do away with the services of outside artists ---- and we want this to be very clearly understood ----- but only to invite both local and outside artists on a fifty-fifty basis.

We should thankfully acknowledge here that the Rama Seva Samithi in another area of the city, Sheshadripuram, which happens to be much more well organised and more sincere institution than the Mandali, has readily responded to our request and is treating both Mysore and outside artistes alike.

But not so our friends from the Mandali. They believe in their dogged obstinacy and have refused to budge from their most unreasonable stand. This being the case, we had no other alternative but to stage a peaceful demonstration against them and this we did on April 27. We should like you to get this clear, that we never resorted to any violence but only led a procession through the main streets of the city with black flags and banners. A public meeting was also held without any untoward incident. There was no reason whatever for our Mandali friends to get panicky, but they did, and imported into the pandal precincts a whole posse of policemen, fully armed and led by senior officers. We were called hooligans and communists, but we never deserved this blame. In fact, nothing whatever happened from our end and Smt. Subbulakshmi did not have to stop singing even for a single second. Meanwhile, we had successfully lodged our peaceful protest.

This is not a piece of self-aggrandisement, but we can assure you that our organisation is not an offshoot of some disgruntled Kannadigas, as some of those who don't see eye to eye with us have made out. Ours is an organised, concerted movement voicing the concern, indignation and charging of Kannadigas in their hour of agony, Our organisation, far from being monopolised by communists and hooligans, is composed of some of the most outstanding men of letters, musicians, journalists, students, factory workers, corporators and members of the State Legislature. There are also office-bearers of over 50 organisations fighting of the legitimate rights and aspirations of the 20 million Kannadigas.

We hold no apology for the cause we have espoused. But we would like to make one point clear. While we are not at all apposed to Tamil artists performing on our soil --- in fact, they are most welcome --- we are not prepared to tolerate the superior airs they choose to sport. This is most insulting and not even the traditionally tolerant Kannadiga can put up with this. The Tamil artists should bear in mind that it is their duty to share the destiny of their brother artists in Karnataka. They have no right to trample on the sentiments of the Kannada people by associating themselves with blatantly mercenary organisations. 

We tell the Tamil artists: Don't have anything to do with such institutions: reciprocate the goodwill of Kannadigas by inviting Kannada artists in large numbers to your State and, when you sing in our State, see that 50 percent of your repertoire consists of Kannada songs.

We are sure that this lengthy explanation convinces you about the real facts of the case. All we are agitating for is the creation of a "live and let-live" policy. After having said all this, would it be too presumptuous on our part to enlist your co-operation in our fight against oppression and low commercialism?

1st June 1962
Printed at the Eastern Press, Bangalore-2.