Nandamuri Harikrishna: An ironic death
On Wednesday morning, all of us woke up to the very devastating news of actor-politician Nandamuri Harikrishna's death. The main reason for feeling so shocked about this untimely demise was majorly because of two reasons. One, he wasn't very old, just a few days short of turning 62. Secondly, the nature of death, a horrific road accident that instantly spelled death. What's more, this came just a few years after the death of his elder son Janakiram who died in a similar road accident in 2014.
Well, soon enough people have been drawing parallels as to how both the deaths happened in cars with the registration number 2323. Some have gone ahead to talk about how the family maybe cursed while driving on the particular route where both the accidents happened, and even Jr NTR escaped injury back in 2009.
But then, the irony we are talking about is way deeper. "Maa intlo jarigina vishadham mare kutumbamlo jaragakudadu," has been a constant in the family films ever since. And yet, even as they cautioned the world to look out and to take care of themselves. But the pain hit them yet again and they lost a senior member of their family to the very danger they had been telling people to look out for.
But the irony doesn't end there.
Because Harikrishna might be known to all of us as an actor, a politician, the son of the legendary NTR or even the father of the present day star NTR, but not many of us know of his proficiency behind the steering wheel. And so, it is ironic that he died while doing something he was known to be a master of. Anyone who knows Harikrishna will talk about how he can drive anything from an auto, to a lorry to well, anything that has wheels!
In fact, the famous yatra on wheels that NTR did in the runup to the 1983 elections saw Harikrishna playing a major role. The vehicle, dubbed the 'Chaitanya Ratham', saw NTR meet and greet people across the length and breadth of the erstwhile Telugu-speaking state of Andhra Pradesh. And Harikrishna is today called Chaitanya Ratha Saradhi because he was the one who drove his father through the length of the epic journey which is today considered monumental in the region's political history. Talk of how his father felt the safest only when his son was on the driver's seat was often heard by all.
Yes, the death is painful. Any death is. But what hurts more is the irony that it is accompanied by. People in the family's hometown of Nimmakuru will surely remember him as the man with the smiling face who never failed to wish them by their name whenever he came across them. As for all of us, we are just going to sing in the irony of how an expert driver drove himself into the arms of death, leaving an entire industry mourning how unlucky it all is, some of us even secretly wishing we could undo what happened.
But at this moment, all we can do is utter a silent prayer, hoping his soul rests in peace. And then wishing his family the strength to take the blow yet again.