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Itha Chandraiah, Atreya Sarma U

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Telugu Literature in Telangana: Itha Chandraiah & U Atreya Sarma

Painting by Laxman Aelay, Telangana. Courtesy-

A sketchy appraisal of Telugu language & literature in Telangana (2005-2014)

Literature is a mirror to the contemporary society. The literary loam of Telangana, despite facing and weathering a complexity of vagaries, has yielded a rich harvest of poetic gems, prose corals, lyric emeralds and fiction rubies – reflecting Sri Krishnadevaraya's pronouncement that Telugu is the best of the nation's languages.

A necessary backdrop

Despite attempts by the past rulers to destroy the Telugu culture and language and despite mocking Telugu as a disorderly language, the flow of Telugu literature has never been unceasing. Telugu literature flourished even before Bammera Potana (1450–1510 AD) composed his Bhagavatam. The people in the other areas were under the impression that Telangana was deficient in Telugu literature having been trampled under the feet of the Nizam. It is an agreed fact that the Telugus had been persecuted under the alien tyranny, yet Telugu culture and language held their own, according to savants like Suravaram Pratapa Reddy and Madapati Hanumantha Rao. Through his compilation of the poetry of three hundred poets of Telangana, Suravaram Pratapa Reddy had proved beyond doubt that Telugu literature had rigorously kept up its momentum and survived the critically testing times. His literary magazine Golconda Patrika served as a forum for Telugu literature.

Be that as it may, Telugu came under the influence of Urdu. Telugu stories like 'Izzat' (by Bhaskarabhatla Krishna Rao, a programme executive in the All India Radio during those times), 'Gyaraa kaddoo barah kotwal' (by Suravaram Pratapa Reddy), and 'Shadee' (by Chava Shivakoti) mirrored the Telugu culture and opposed the despotism of Doras - the feudal lords who were the stooges of the Nizam.

Though the Telugu litterateurs were incarcerated under the Nizam's rule, it couldn't blunt the sharpness of their pens for they treated the prisons as mansions of moonlight. Dasaradhi Krishnamacharya who wrote awakening poems like Agnidhara was jailed at Nizamabad. He was not one to be cowed down. Not having chalk, he picked up pieces of coal, and scribbled his poems on the prison walls. During those days, he wrote –

Oh, you the Nizam devil!
Never had we a ruler like you;
Snapping the strings you threw in fire
My Telangana veena studded with a crore of gems!
(Translation by U Atreya Sarma)

"You the ruler of the Nizam state, who has outmatched the Nazis" so composed and sang aloud Yadagiri, a balladeer. In the same spirit, many a poet had denounced the Nizam rule and fearlessly lit up the lamps of poetry. They included Suddala Hanumanthu, Tirunagari Ramanjaneyulu, Kaloji, Gangula Shai Reddy, Potlapalli Ramarao, Kanchanapalli Venkata Ramarao, Makhdoom, Ayibala Machaiah, Avula Pichaiah, B Gangaram, Uppanna, MS Rajalingam, Devulapalli Ramanuja Rao, Devulapalli Venkateswara Rao and Nalla Narsimlu.

On August 15, 1947, India got independence but Telangana didn't. In the Nizam rule, people had fallen victim to the communal fanaticism of Qasim Razvi. Even during that time a number of poets had dared to spew fire through their works. PV Narasimha Rao wrote a story 'Golla Ramavva' in which an ordinary old woman, to express her protest against the Nizam rule, protects an anti-Nizam fighter. So also PV's another story 'Blue silk sari' written in English had awakened the educated.

Like how Yakshagana has become an integral part of the dramatic literature, lyrics or ballads have become an integral part of the poetic literature. The story of Sarvaya Papanna, a cowherd who took up cudgels against the atrocities of the alien rulers heady with power and money, has been preserved in the ballads. He even ascended the throne and ruled for a day.

"Our history has not been written by our own people. We are simply following the history written by the Persians, the English and the Turks,"1 observed Sriranga Swami (Ponuka, p 56). The lyrical literature singing the story of Sarvaya Papanna or Papadu was recorded by JA Boyle, Esq, MCS, an English scholar. Says he –

"The first folk ballad is apparently a modern composition, sung by the family minstrel of a Poligar, or petty chieftain in the Ceded Districts. The man, of the Boya caste, from whose mouth I wrote it, was a native of Bellary. The name of the hero, Papadu, marks him as a member of the Nayadu or the Kapu caste, but I have been unable to identify his family or history. Not only local traditions but sober records and official history, preserve the memories of these turbulent Poligars. Their forts are now crumbling ruins; and their descendants have sunk upon the dead level of struggling farmers; but their stories live in the ballads that the family minstrel sang at the little court, and which now linger in the memories of a whole country-side.

The minstrel tells us nothing of the hero's parentage except his mother's name, Saramma, but plunges in medias res at once with a kind of war-cry of the hero."

(The Indian Antiquary, Vol. III, 1874, Telugu Ballad Poetry, p 2)

The ballad of Sarvaya Papanna, though it relates to the Rayalaseema region, is the main root of the Telugu folk literature and of the present day poetic community.

The Telangana Telugu literary movement, influenced by the trends in the ancient, the Prabandha, the lyrical and the modern fictional literature, is flowing on with a progressive ethos. The Telangana literary history may be classified under four periods – the early, the later, the modern and the post-modern. There are quite a few significant features in the Telangana literary edifice built during the last decade (2005-2014) on the superstructure of its long history.

Public awareness has expanded and intensified after K Chandrasekhar Rao (KCR) formed the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) in 2001. The urge for a separate Telangana state firmly took root and the movement grew up into a huge tree in a matter of ten years. Poets and artists wielded their pens, composed songs on Telangana culture and went about singing them aloud. An impression had gained ground among the common people that the governments had not paid attention to the development of Telangana and that they ruled with discrimination. Capturing this simmering discontent, poets-artists attracted the masses with suitable songs and dances. Poetry, stories, plays and novels sprang up singing paeans to the glory of Telangana. The theme of a separate Telangana became a point of elaboration even in the Avadhanams – acrobatics of extempore poetry. A number of organisations published poetic and fiction compilations; and a series of poetic assemblies and story soirees were organised.

Well before this, had cascaded a number of poems and stories highlighting the uniqueness and diversity of Telangana culture from the pens of writers like Dasaradhi Krishnamacharya, Kaloji Narayana Rao, Alwar Swami, Vemuganti, Suravaram Pratapa Reddy, Ch Narayana, Madapati Hanumantha Rao, Itha Chandraiah and Kaluva Mallaiah. Re-conveyed through the books of the movement, these poems and stories regaled the people and charged the youth. Song and dance performances were given by lyricists like Gaddar, Rasamayi Balakishan, Venugopal, Desapati Srinivas and Vimalakka.

Unable to get employment in the undivided Andhra Pradesh, thousands of youth and students committed suicide and became martyrs. In tribute to them a number of songs were penned and sung.

Consequent on the fast-unto-death undertaken by KCR for a separate Telangana, the Central government announced a separate Telangana in 2009, but again, in a knee-jerk reaction, immediately backtracked. This infuriated the people and the flames of the movement touched the sky. And literature too was created at the same fiery tempo. The literary associations at places like Warangal, Karimnagar, Siddipet and Hyderabad girded up their loins and released literary volumes and compilations on the movement. Whatever the form of literature – poetry, story, essay or novel –, their only theme was the movement. Unable to face the flames of the movement, the Congress-led UPA government declared the formation of a separate Telangana state and passed a bill in the Parliament a little before the general elections were due. Telangana state came into being on June 2, 2014. In the elections to the Lok Sabha and the state Assembly the ruling Congress was defeated and the TRS came to power in Telangana. From then on, reconstruction of Telangana has become the staple theme of the Telangana literature.

This is all just one side of the coin.

The flow of Telangana literature has seen various turns and twists. It has acquired a note of modernity and ultra-modernity.

The modern generation is impatient and restless with the speed in its lifestyle. Time and patience to buy a ticket and watch a drama for hours together is already passι. TV mega serials and variety shows have gained ground; the episodes of the serials run into thousands. There is no home without a TV set.

Objective and trend of literature

Literature is meant for universal good (Viswa sreyah kavyam), say our seers. There are writers who are creating their works and earning good name by imbibing this ideal and discipline. And there are reckless writings countering the literature that seeks national welfare. A literary conflict based on diverse ideologies and dialectics is rampant. During the decade under review, the voices of Marxism/Maoism, feminism, Dalit feminism and minority-ism have been vocal in Telugu literature. Anthologies of poetry and short stories, novels and articles have come out reinforcing the respective ideologies. There is an imperative need to be clear about the trajectory and destination of the democratic right to freedom of expression. There is a viewpoint that ideologies and disputations like these keep literature and society divided, thereby weakening the national integrity. The protagonists of the other viewpoint argue: 'How can it be wrong to fight for the respective rights when there is a need for awakening among the people that were suppressed for generations? Should the downtrodden continue to be trampled under the feet of feudal lords and rulers even in a democracy?' 'Let there be any number of ideologies and viewpoints but let all of them have a common thread of national welfare like a string holding a garland of flowers.

The sphere of poetry

Poetic literature can be said to be of three types – metrical poetry, free verse and lyrical poetry. Prabandha literature has entertained the people for centuries, but its creation in the modern times has lost popular appeal. There is a perception that metrical poetry is the domain of only the erudite sections; even then, the production of Satakas (a poetic composition of a hundred or more stanzas with a refrain) has not come down. Likewise, creation of Prabandha poetry in the contemporary milieu may be on the wane but has not diluted in quality. Examples are Manikantha by Nayakam Venkatesham, and Purushothamudu by Ashtakala Narasimharama Sarma. The advocates of free verse have threatened that they would break the backs of metrical poetry; but only the backs of such critics have got broken – with the metrical poesy withstanding the onslaught and standing erect. And there are poets like Rallabandi Kavita Prasad and Tirunagari who are equally adept in conventional metrical poetry as well as modern free verse. Tirunagari received the Pratibha Puraskaram (2013) from Potti Sreeramulu Telugu University.

Free verse is racing ahead with jet speed. Free verse, which does not care for the rules of prosody, has been proliferating in quantity, anthologies and compilations. To pre-empt the trivialisation of the free verse in immature hands, Kundurti and Kovela Sampatkumaracharya had shown proper direction, but there have been very few takers. The poetry of Kanaparti Ramachandracharya scintillates with pun and humour. Poets like Yaakoob, Kotam Chandrasekhar and Ravi Verelly have made a mark for themselves. Satya Srinivas is a trilingual blogger in Telugu, English and Hindi. The spirit of poesy has seeped into the veins of even youngsters and they have been coming up with their anthologies: Mohan Rishi with his Zero Degree, Nandakishore with his Neelage Okadundevaadu, and Kasiraju with his Bhoomadhyarekha.

Dalit writers have been writing impacting poetry. Denchanala Srinivas received the Central Sangeet Natak Academy's Fellowship and the Keerthi Puraskaram from the PS Telugu University–Government of AP. Noted Dalit poets include - Jvalita, Jajula Gauri and Juupaka Subhadra.

More and more minority poets have been entering the scene. A few names to mention are Abd Wahed, Shajahana, Skybaba and Shamshaad.

Among the artist-cum-writers we have B Narasinga Rao, V Chennaiah and others.

The art of Avadhanam which is a monopoly of the Telugus has retained its appeal. Avadhanams, with the literary interrogators ranging from eight to as many as a thousand or a couple of thousands in a single programme, sharpen one's literary intellect and entertain, stimulate and edify not only the erudite and the aesthetically minded but also the average audience – with the practitioners ready to deal with the mundane and popular topics as well. It is rather a matter of disappointment that Telangana does not have any Avadhani of the calibre of the likes of Medasani Mohan, Garikipati Narasimha Rao and Madugula Nagaphani Sarma – all of whom belong to Andhra, though the last two have their base in Hyderabad.

The decade has seen the lyrical poetry in its terpsichorean best. The songs in the movies and in the TV programmes are nothing but lyrical poetry – a medium for short and long poetical works including for story narration. Swara Layalu, a book on Hindustani music written in Telugu by Samala Sadasiva won the Sangeet Natak Akademi award (2011).

It is heartening that the polymath and author of over one hundred books – Kapilavayi Lingamurthy – was honoured with a doctorate by the PS Telugu University.

The short form of poetry – 'Naaneelu,' innovated by N Gopi – has enthused many a young poet like S Raghu, and hundreds of Naanee works have come out. Inspired by this genre, another innovative short form – 'Rekkalu,' pioneered by MK Sugam Babu – has entered the poetic arena. These new forms of poetry have been giving expression to the sweat of the toiling masses.

In the terrain of conventional metrical poesy, none has attempted new prosodic or metrical patterns and this throws a challenge to the practitioners.

The online poetic group 'Kavi Sangamam,' created by Kavi Yakoob, has expanded at a tremendous pace and the collective enthusiasm has led to periodical live meets with physical presence. The catchword of Kavi Sangamam is captivatingly open and positive: "If you're a green tree, the birds come on their own and perch on you. We need poetry and poetry."

The Telugu literary movement is active overseas as well. The service being rendered by Afsar Mohammed & Kalpana Rentala in the USA is to be appreciated.

The field of short fiction

The genre of narrative literature is classified into four in the Agni Purana – Akhyayika (real/historical story), Katha (imaginary story with little truth), Khanda Katha (short story), Parikatha (fairy tale) and Kathanika (small tale). Nowadays, Kathanika is one which is dialogic and modern in language and expression of feelings. But in practice, all of these are in vogue as Katha only. Fictional narrative has become the most popular of all the literary genres. Over the last decade the genre of story has seen an exuberant bloom and international status.

Munshi Premchand, the polestar on the firmament of Hindi fictional literature, had as early as during his times delineated the objective of modern fiction. "Even those who have never experienced grief in their lives will grieve on reading a story. There could be only one reason: The subtle touches that are there in a story may not be there in the real life (Article by BS Ramulu, Andhra Prabha Daily, Dec 15, 2014).

The Telangana storywriters standing at the crossroad are unable to decide up to what extent they should use the regional dialect. Some of them presume that the Urdu-mixed Telugu itself is the real Telugu language. The majority opinion is: Only such Telangana dialect should be used as can be understood by all the Telugus across the regions.

The decade under review has witnessed a large amount of thematic diversity – drought and famine accompanied by scarcity of water for drinking and irrigation; woes of the elderly shorn of filial affection; vanishing caste-based occupations and the difficulties of the caste-based artists; the sufferings of the labour force which is on a migrating spree to Dubai, Mumbai and to the coal mines and the misery of their families; child marriages that are still rearing their heads of identity; self-immolations of wives unable to bear the harassments at the hands of the in-laws; a lot more other troubles the fair sex is facing; internecine caste feuds; the distress of the Singareni mining workers and their ways of life; and the human values that are ebbing away.

Newspapers and magazines have accorded a place of prominence to fiction and it has blazed new trails in the form of long story, short story, single page story, one paragraph story, and postcard story. Magazines like Vipula, Nadhi and Navya have been inviting and patronising stories like these. Besides newspapers and magazines, a host of literary bodies like Sahithi Samithi (Ranga Reddy District), Jatiya Sahitya Parishat (Medak District), Nomula Satyanarayana Sahitee Samstha (Nalgonda District), and Ranjani-Telugu Sahithi Samithi (AG Office, Hyderabad) have been organising story competitions and distributing prizes and awards to the winners.

The format of Telugu story writing skills has reached a significant height. For the edifice of a story, its theme is the cornerstone. Distinguishing a short story from a novel, William Henry Hudson observes, "The germinal idea must be perfectly clear and the interest arising out of it must never be complicated by any other consideration." Most of the stories are in tune with this clarity. Stories reflecting the local customs and ethos of a particular place or region and its diversity like – Maa Vemulawada Kathalu (by Zimbo) and Siddhipuri Kathalu (by Itha Chandraiah) – have appeared in good number and in collections. Out of the nine rasas (emotions), many magazines have organised competitions for stories laced with Hasya (humour), but it was left to the Srilekha Sahithi (Warangal) to invite stories with the dominant emotion of Karuna (pathos) and they brought out an anthology under the title of this mood (2014).

For the appreciation and guidance of the current and budding writers on how to write a story, several books have come out. Kathala Badi by BS Ramulu and Kathaa Kamaamishu by Itha Chandraiah have catered to this need. The Jagriti Weekly and a few organisations have conducted story writing appreciation camps for the inexperienced enthusiasts. The Siddipet unit of the Jatiya Sahitya Parishat organised a training camp for the young story writers. Akasha Vani, Vedagiri Communications, Jatiya Sahitya Parishat have held district level conferences and enhanced the appreciation of the art of story writing.

Among the storywriters with prolific output the names that immediately come to mind are Kaluva Mallaiah, Kasireddy, Itha Chandraiah, Rama Chandramouli, BS Ramulu, Bejjarapu Ravinder, Doraveti and Peddinti Ashok Kumar. It is laudable that hundreds of new and young writers are coming into the field and proving their competence by rolling out stories in thousands.

The arena of the novel

For a long time women novelists held the sway in the arena of novel writing. Novels with magic and witchcraft and 'kitchen-sink' themes had their day. The decade has seen the decline of the long novel for want of readers' patience and time. Many magazines have been serialising the novels. Anticipating the breakneck pace of life, Caleb Thomas Winchester observed as early as 1899: "In these days of haste there is a manifest tendency to cut down the novel into briefest possible form and supplant it by the short story." Accordingly, novellas have almost displaced the novels.

These are the times of colloquial language and expression with the expansion of education and range of readership. The novels by many of the Telangana writers, couched in the regional dialect and syntax, are an embellishment in themselves. The novel Kala Rekhalu by Ampashayya Naveen written in such a dialect long ago won subsequently the Central Sahitya Academy award (2004). Written in the same dialectal style, the novel Adapilla by Itha Chandraiah claimed the Someswara Sahiti award (Visakhapatnam).

Novels like Maro Shivaji by Doraveti and Sri Vasavamba by Itha Chandraiah capture the stories of the Indian heroes. Kaluva Mallaiah's Batuku Pustakam bagged the American Telugu Association's prestigious prize. The same novelist's Madiga Vijayam and Telangana Devadasu portray the lives of the poor and depressed. Among the very popular novels figure – Cheekatlo Chirudeepam by Rajesham, Kukka by Vemula Ellaiah and Aame Adavini Jayinchindi by Geetanjali. Novelists like Muktavaram Parthasaradhi, Doraveti, Ch Madhu, Sirigada Shankar, Sadananda Sarada, Pasupuleti Mallikarjuna Rao, Ennivella Rajamouli and Polkampalli Santha Devi have enriched the Telugu novel.

A good number of psycho-analytic novels had come up in Telugu; and Ampashayya Naveen has made a study of them in his pioneering work, Manovaignanika Novel-ala Vishleshana (2012).

The domain of drama

Drama is the most delightful literary genre (Kavyeshu natakam ramyam), goes an ancient Indian saying. Drama, playlet, Burrakatha, mono-action, fancy dress, radio play and Yakshagana form part of the theatrical literature. Though creation of these forms has greatly come down owing to the dominance of the cinema and the TV, we are still getting new plays and playlets. Akashavani with its weekly and monthly plays is leading in this activity. A good number of playwrights like Palle Seenu, Sriramulu, Satyanarayana, K Ravindranath, Itha Chandraiah and Kaluva Mallaiah have shown their competence in this field.

The stage performances with their brilliant facilities and settings, thanks to adoption of latest technology, are popular enough. The Surabhi troupes are a solid example of the phenomenal success of stage plays. This medium is tapped well to publicise the governmental development programmes. There are associations promoting the theatre arts by conducting competitions and presenting prizes. Government is lending a helping hand to forms like Yakshagana, Oggu Katha and Tolubommalata (puppetry) which are on the verge of extinction. The number of new playlets has, no doubt, diminished but they are good enough in gaining public approbation.

Non-fictional prose literature

Non-fictional prose literature has not lagged behind in hogging institutional limelight. Two works have won the Kendra Sahitya Academy awards – Satapatramu an autobiography by Gadiyaram Ramakrishna Sarma (2007) and Sahitya-Akashamlo Sagam, a book of literary essays by Katyayani Vidmahe (2013). Gannu Krishna Murthy, versatile poet-storywriter-translator-literary critic, has brought out a well-researched book, Ramudante Evaru? Ramayanamante Emiti? (2009), approaching the Ramayana from a rational and third dimensional perspective, winning plaudits from savants and critics.

Translational literature

Translational literature is an important contributor to national integration. Central Sahitya Academy, National Book Trust of India, Bharat Bharati and some of the universities have been encouraging the translation activity. Translations are enriching the diversity of Indian culture and showcasing it on the world stage. But the outflow of Telugu literature is not as much as the inflow of the literatures of other languages. In addition to the Central Sahitya Academy, the Potti Sriramulu Telugu University has been giving awards to the best translation works. The novels Kalarekhalu by Ampashayya Naveen and Padamati Suryodayam by Itha Chandraiah have been translated into Hindi. The stories by writers like Amballa Janardan and Itha Chandraiah have been rendered into English, Odiya, Tamil, Kannada and other languages. Works of poets like N Gopi and C Narayana Reddy have been translated into English and various Indian languages. And Narayana Reddy has been bringing out a new poetic anthology on every birthday of his.

The Central Sahitya Academy has got the magnum opuses of many other Indian languages into Telugu. Itha Chandraiah has translated into Telugu two of such Hindi works – Hindi Kahani Sangrah and Bharatiya Soundarya Bodh Aur Tulsi Das. Children's literature and other Hindi works of the National Book Trust of India have been translated into Telugu. Similarly, Sahitya Niketan (Bharat Bharati) has got many Hindi and English books translated into Telugu. A special mention needs to be made of Nalimela Bhaskar, a polyglot in fourteen languages, who has won the Central Sahitya Academy award for his translation of the Malayalam novel Smaraka Silagal into Telugu as Smaraka Silalu (2010). He is also the compiler of the dictionary Telangana Padakosham.

Other important bilingual writers and translators include Darbhasayanam Srinivasacharya (Warangal), Alladi Uma, M Sridhar and Velchala Kondal Rao whose translation of Devarakonda Balagangadhara Tilak's Amritam Kurisina Ratri with the English title, The Night The Nectar Rained (2005), has won the PS Telugu University award. His translation of Pattabhi's radical poetry under the title, Poetry Pattabhic, is said to have wowed the original writer himself.

And U Atreya Sarma has translated some of the powerful poems of Telangana poets like C Narayana Reddy, Kotam Chandrashekhar and S Raghu for Muse India.

Magazines like Vipula have been increasing the readers' horizon by publishing stories translated from other languages. Similarly the Muse India ezine has been, in its modest way, bringing out special features on Telugu language and literature – by way of translation into English. It has also been providing a representative forum to the Telugu writers in the sessions of the Hyderabad Literary Festival of which it is the prime mover.

Children's literature

Taking the criticism that Telugu literature is deficient in children's literature as a challenge, a number of Telangana writers have written and published books to fill the gap. The children's writers who were earlier in a few tens have now risen to a hundred. Magazines like Balamitra, Chandrabala and Molaka are exclusively devoted to children's literature. Most of the other newspapers and magazines have their own space for children. Annual awards to the best children's literature are being presented by the Central Sahitya Academy, the PS Telugu University and the noted children's writer Vasala Narsaiah of Metpally. Uggu Paalu, a compilation of 90 children's stories by M Bhoopal Reddy won the Kendra Sahitya Akademi Award (2011). And D Sujatha Devi has won the Bala Sahitya Puraskar for her book of stories, Aatalo Aratipandu (2013). Others working in this field include Pendem Jagadeeshwar, Pattipaka Mohan, Garishakurti Rajendra, Itha Chandraiah, Ennivella Rajamouli, T Vedanta Suri, Paidimarri Ramakrishna, Suraram Shankar, Mekala Madanmohan Rao, Undrala Rajesham, Varkolu Lakshmiah and Pendota Venkateswarlu.

Research & teaching of Telugu as a language

There is a lot to be desired in the Telugu lexicography. Ravva Srihari, a leading philologist has brought out path-breaking works – Annamayya Bhasha Vaibhavam (under literary criticism), Annamayya Padakosam (a lexical corpus of the words used by the saint-poet), Sahitee Neerajanam (an anthology of essays). His lexicographical efforts have won him the Visishta Telugu Puraskaram of the AP Official Languages Commission (2013).

The Telugu that is being taught in the schools and colleges of Telangana is blazing a new trail. Cultural values are being imparted in Telugu along with other studies. Due care unto this is being taken in preparing the syllabus. Special training classes are being conducted for Telugu pundits and lecturers. The recent introduction of the Ramayana as a non-detailed text for the Seventh Class is a good augury. The teaching of Telugu from Intermediate to PG, buttressed with the writing in different genres, is satisfactory.

The development of Telugu is being monitored by the Official Language Commissions of the respective Telugu governments. Research in Telugu language and literature is going on in the universities of some of the non-Telugu states also. Research by hundreds of scholars has taken place in Telangana during the decade under review.

The future of Telugu in Telangana, until the proposed English medium is introduced from KG to PG, will not be clear.


1. The authors regret that the names of many writers could not be mentioned for reasons of time and space constraints. If such writers can fill in Muse India with suitable information, the same could be considered for the next feature on Telugu language & literature.

2. The authors are grateful to NS Murty, bilingual writer, for his supplementing inputs that have gone into this article.


1 Matter within the quotes translated by U Atreya Sarma.


Focus – Indian Literature Today

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  Bengali Literature: Subodh Sarkar
  Gujarati Literature: Ajay Sarvaiya
  Hindi Literature: Sukrita Paul Kumar
  Indian English Writing: GJV Prasad
  Indian English Writing: Harish Trivedi
  Kannada Literature: Mamta Sagar
  Kashmiri Literature: Mohammad Zahid
  Maithili Literature: Vidyanand Jha
  Malayalam Literature: T P Rajeevan
  Marathi Literature: Sachin Ketkar
  Odia Literature: Lipipuspa Nayak
  Punjabi Literature: Tejwant Singh Gill
  Tamil Literature: Rajaram Brammarajan
  Telugu Literature in Andhra: U Atreya Sarma & K Ravindra Trivikram
  Telugu Literature in Telangana: Itha Chandraiah & U Atreya Sarma
  Urdu Literature: Sukrita Paul Kumar

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