Hyderabad: A renowned story writer who unveiled life in vivid detail in his short stories and novels depicting culture and ethos of Rayalaseema region in the same dialect, Kethu Viswanatha Reddy passed away in Ongole of Andhra Pradesh in the early hours of Monday. He was 84.
Viswanatha Reddy had gone his daughter’s house in Ongole where he passed away, according to reports.
Viswanatha Reddy was a recipient of Central Sahitya Akademi award and several other awards in the literary field. He was a well known teacher and had retired as a director in the Dr BR Ambedkar Open University. He hailed from Rangasaipuram village in Erraguntla mandal of YSR Kadapa district.
There are several notable achievements of Dr Kethu Viswanatha Reddy in the field of Telugu language and literature. His PhD thesis was on, “Kadapa Zilla grama namalu” (Kadapa district village names) which was the first of its kind as it dwelt with how the names of villages originated, their archeological, historical, linguistic and social relevance. After the demise of noted Telugu writer, critic and literary personality Kodavatikanti Kutumba Rao, Dr Kethu brought a six volumes of Kutumba Rao fictional writings, edited them and gave detailed footnotes. He was the member of Central Sahitya Academy for many years.
When Prof G Ramireddy became the first Vice Chancellor Dr B R Ambedkar Open University, he brought in Dr Kethu from Krishnadevaraya University and made him head of the Telugu Department. Dr Kethu with the help of Prof Chekuri Rama Rao prepared the textbooks in Telugu for the Open University Courses, which became the gold standard of Telugu Text books till date. He was the one who enlisted the services of noted artist and illustrator Chandra in designing the course material.
A simple and very down to earth personality, Dr Kethu Viswanatha Reddy used to complain that contemporary Telugu literary works were not translated into other languages especially into English and felt that it was the reason why Telugu writers are not known to other language people.