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Mana Sanskriti (Our Culture)
Chief Editor: Dr. Sreenivasarao Vepachedu
Venkataramasastri Oleti (1883-1939)
Venkataramasastri Oleti and Ramakrishnasastri Vedula were a pair of poets known as "Ramakrishna Kavulu." They were also cousins. Ramakrishna Kavulu were poet laureates in the kingdom of Pithapuram in the court of great king (maharaja) Suryarao Rao.
According to a Sanskrit saying, knowledge flourishes by competition and debate is the touchstone of one's scholarship. Tirupati Venkata Kavulu, another popular poet pair, were their rivals. Poet pair Tirupati Venkata Kavulu and rival poet pair Rama Krishna Kavulu produced a lot of literature through rivalry and competition. Tirupati-Venkata kavulu entered into an interesting contest with the Poets-laureate of Pithapuram Kingdom. Ramakrishna Kavulu attacked Tirupathi Venkata Kavulu in an article called Srinkhala to which Tirupati Venkata Kavulu responded by writing Srinkhala triNeekaraNamu. When Tirupathi Venkata Kavulu wrote paaMDavaasvamEdhamu, Ramakrishna Kavulu wrote Sataghni by showing 100 errors in paaMDavaasvamEdhamu to which Tirupati Venata Kavulu responded with paasupatamu. Similarly, khaMDana maMDanamulu and maMDana muMDanamulu were written. Tirupati Venkata Kavulu wrote geeratamu and biDaaloapaakhyaanamu, when Ramakrishna Kavulu wrote koakila kaakamu and sringabhamgamu.
When Ramakrishnasastri died at a young age of 29, Venkatasastri Chellapilla (one of the rival Tirupati Venkata Kavulu pair) wrote in grief: "You departed because you could not stop; I stopped because I could not go; It seems even Gods have little control over their decisions; Then what of the poor mortals?"
After the death of Ramakrishnasastri, Venkataramasastri wrote under the pair's name. He also wrote independent books such as viswagunaadarsamu, paaNigraheeti, kauravagauravamu, koMDaveeti vijayamu, ouchitya vichaaracharcha, suvriti tilakamu, matsyapuraanamu, mairaavaNa charitra, madaalasa, uttararaama charitra, iMdiraadevi, parasuraamakavi padyoapanyaasamulu, kathaasaritsaagaramu etc. He also ran a journal kavita (poetry).
1) "naa vaangmaya mitrulu" by Kameswararao Tekumalla
2) Encyclopedia of Indian Literature, Vol I.
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