HYDERABAD: On the occasion of Akkineni Nageswara Rao's centenary birth anniversary, a momentous event unfolded at Annapurna Studios in Hyderabad. The former Vice-President of India, Venkaiah Naidu, gracefully unveiled a striking bronze statue to commemorate the late legendary actor. The distinguished gathering included his son, Nagarjuna, along with his grandchildren, extended family members, and a constellation of luminaries from the entertainment world, including Jaya Sudha, Mohan Babu, Mahesh Babu, SS Rajamouli, and Ram Charan.
The event, masterfully orchestrated by Nagarjuna, himself a venerable figure in the Telugu film industry for the past three decades, resonated with heartfelt tributes to the iconic actor.
In a heartfelt address, former Vice-President Venkaiah Naidu paid his respects: "Akkineni Nageswara Rao garu was not only a brilliant actor but also a remarkable human being. I had the privilege of knowing him personally, engaging in insightful conversations during our meetings. He remained committed to his craft throughout his life, acting passionately until his last breath. In a world where values often waver, he steadfastly held onto his principles. Our homage today is to follow the path he illuminated for us."
Nagarjuna, emotionally addressing the gathering, remarked, "It remains an arduous task to accept the absence of my father from our lives, and the presence of this statue serves as a poignant reminder of his physical departure. What an illustrious journey my father traversed-- an artist bedecked with numerous accolades and accolades throughout his lifetime. He portrayed characters that will remain etched in the collective memory for generations. But to us, my father was the beacon of love that illuminated our lives. Simply sitting beside him had the power to mend everything."
Akkineni Nageswara Rao, adorned with the Padma Bhushan and Padma Vibhushan awards, graced the Telugu film industry for an astonishing 75 years. His indelible mark is evident in cinematic classics such as Devadasu, Premabhishekam, Laila Majnu, Prema Nagar, Mooga Manasulu, Anarkali, Batasari, and many more. Nageswara Rao, affectionately known as ANR, played an instrumental role in shaping the Telugu film industry's landscape during the 1970s.