Nandamuri Taraka Ramarao, the name that is synonymous with classic films, a demigod, greatness and so many other emotions. He was born a common man, like anyone of us, but his acts and his life were anything but common. He became a demigod to the Telugu audiences, who love him to date. He became the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh three times in a row, a feat that was unheard of at the time.
NTR was born on this day, May 28th, in 1923, in Nimmakuru. He left a government job for his love of acting, and slowly rose to being a star with no parallels. He was the go-to for any mythological or folklore films, and he was the only person that audiences could accept as Lord Rama and Lord Krishna. He not only acted but also wrote, produced and directed successful films, a very feat for anyone. After a more than successful film career, he founded the Telugu Desam Party on 29th March 1982, and became the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh with a resounding majority, in 1983.
NTR was the first non-Congress Chief Minister that Andhra Pradesh ever saw, since its formation in 1956. He established TDP to restore the self-respect of the Telugu people after the Indian National Congress failed to do so, and after the leadership of the INC changed five Chief Ministers for AP in 5 years. NTR was also highly instrumental in forming the Nationa Front, which consisted of all parties against the INC. NTR was also the major opposition to the INC in the Lok Sabha, in 1984, making it the first time a regional party posed the major opposition to the INC, a record in itself.
NTR not only campaigned for TDP but also campaigned for other parties that were part of the National Front. In 1984, during Tamil Nadu’s elections, when AIADMK Chief MGR, a close friend of NTR’s, was in the USA due to health reasons, NTR stepped up and campaigned for the AIADMK in Tamil Naud, which won the elections, making MGR the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu.
As the Chief Minister of AP, NTR had in fact raised the self-respect of the Telugus, by making their culture and their language noted to the entire world, distinguishing it from the Madrasi culture it was usually confused with. Even to this day, NTR is known as the torchbearer of the Telugu culture, the pride of the Telugu people, and he will always remain in history as the man who changed the course of history in every way possible to him.
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