Revolutionary writer and eminent singer Vangapandu Prasada Rao, 77 years old, died of ill health in his residence located at Pedabondapalli of Parvatipuram mandal, Vizianagaram district. Prasada Rao who has been associated with Jana Natya Mandali since 1972 enthralled audience with his thought provoking songs and speeches.
Born in Pedda Bondapalli of Parvathipuram mandal in 1943, he founded Jana Natya Mandali, a cultural wing of People’s War Group in 1972 and was quite popular as Uttarandhra Gaddar. He was awarded Kalaratna award by the State Government in 2017.
Vangapandu has written hundreds of folk songs that reflect various aspects of oppressed classes of North Andhra and tribals. ‘Em Pillo Veldamostava, Em Pillado Veldamostava…’, ‘Yantrametta nadustumdantee..’, ‘Jajjenaka janare..’, are some of his popular songs.
Jattu Trust D.Pari Naidu said that Prasada Rao provided story for Amrita Bhoomi movie which was planned to highlight the importance of natural farming. Jattu member Vangala Dali Naidu urged the government to allocate decent land to his family since the previous two acres land allocated was barren and not useful for agriculture activity.
Several writers of Srikakulam district including Nalli Dharmaa Rao expressed shock over the sudden death of Prasada Rao. He said that rights of the downtrodden sections were being protected and highlighted with his writings and songs.
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy said in his condolence message that ‘I am very sad to hear the news of Vangapandu’s demise. Vangapandu has been very close to me personally. He has converted folk songs to his tune. In this way Vangapandu became the commander of the Uttarakhand movement. Prasad Rao has played an important role in the history of Telugu literature and art. On the death of such a great person, I express my deepest condolences to his family.
Apart from him, Deputy Chief Minister Pushpa Srivani said in his condolence message, “Vangapandu has brought folk songs of Uttarakhand globally. We are all proud that Vangapandu is a resident of our region in Vijayanagara district. Vangpandu has written his songs, writing and Art performance has made people aware. Vangapandu has been a great artist. He has narrated the plight of people of Uttarakhand for 5 decades with his songs. His death is an incomparable loss of Uttarakhand. YSR Congress Party always honors Prasad Rao’s family I will remain. I wish her soul peace.”