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Government College in Andhra Pradesh Honors Krishna and Lakshmi Vavilala

The Chairman of the Foundation for India Studies (FIS), Houston, Krishna Vavilala and his wife, Lakshmi were honored by the Government College during a recent visit to their home town Rajahmundry in Andhra Pradesh.

“It was indeed an emotional moment for me and my wife, Lakshmi, to be honored by my own Alma Mater where my grandfather, Vavilala Vasudeva Sastri, a literary giant had served as a Lecturer and Superintendent of vernaculars, 137 years ago” said Krishna (Sastri) Vavilala, 75, who graduated with distinction from the college getting his first degree in B.Sc. Physics in 1955 before becoming an Electrical Engineer from BITS, Pilani. The “Sanmanam” done in traditional Indian style was part of the college’s 159th Anniversary Day celebrations which was well attended by several Government officials, educationists and students.

Founded by the British in 1853 at the same time as the Presidency College in Chennai, the Rajahmundry Govt. College was the first and oldest college in Andhra Pradesh, initially affiliated to Madras University and later to Andhra University.  Under the dynamic administration of its current Principal, Dr. G. Samuel Moses, the college has about 3500 students on its rolls.

The Rajahmundry Govt. College imparted Western standards of higher education without losing Indian ethos and has produced personae of par excellence in all walks of life and learning.

For example, Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, a former President of India (1962-1967) was on its faculty and taught Philosophy at the college in 1916-1919.  Also on the faculty was Vavilala Vasudeva Sastri (1874-1897) who made three significant landmark contributions to Telugu literature by authoring the very first original Telugu social drama, “Nandaka Rajyam”, a very first translation of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar into Telugu. Lakshmi Vavilala’s father, Dr. G.V.L.N.Murthy had also graduated from the same college obtaining his first degree in B.Sc. Chemistry before getting his Doctorate and then became the first Indian Chief Chemist of Tata Iron Steel Company at Jamshedpur.

 

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