On Vaddera Chandidas

Ramarao, Ram (Ram_Ramarao@tri.sbc.com)
Fri, 1 Aug 1997 11:51:18 -0500


Recently I have reread a novel by Vaddera Chandidas (whose real name, I
heard, is Dr. C.S. Rao; used to be on the faculuty of Philosophy at SV
University and then moved to Osmania?), "anu kshaNikam", a remarkable
experiment in Telugu literature. Even for those acquainted with his
"Hima jwAla" that appeared as a serial in Andhra Jyothi in early '70's,
this work can be a shocker. It is the story of a large number of
students at Osmania University during the period of Emergency, written
almost like a diary, and it is the most authentic of such works I have
seen either in Telugu or English (of course I do not know of anything
that even comes close to it in Telugu where as a recent work in English
by Rohinton Mistri, "A fine balance", tried to depict the fate of four
characters in Bombay during the Emergency period; while well-written, I
found its tone highly pessimistic - everything goes wrong to every
character). 

This author is the most blatant violator of political correctness since
Chalam. I have heard that "anu kshaNikam" too, like its predecessor
"Hima jwAla" has been highly controversial in its frankness, closeness
to reality, and power of expression.

rAvi Sastry's final work, "illu" as another recent example where the
author does not mince words at all in describing how one group of people
feel about another. 

If you are not easily offended by some brutal language then you might
want to read "anu kshaNikam," that would rank among the likes of
"civaraku migilEDi," "naimiSaranyam," and "asura sandhya," in faithfully
depicting the life of a section of the society with the background of
some remarkable factual events.