Social activist passes away

Renowned social activist and Padma Shri awardee Gutha Muniratnam breathed his last at a hospital in Chennai on Thursday afternoon. He was 86.

A disciple of Acharya N.G. Ranga and former Member of Parliament P. Rajagopal Naidu, Muniratnam founded the Tirupati-based Rayalaseema Seva Samithi (RASS) as a social organisation with diverse activities in the form of reaching out to the mentally challenged, caring for the children, support to widows, tribal welfare, drug addiction victims and special care to senior citizens.

As the organisation grew, it spread to many other States, and its outreach necessitated its rechristening as Rashtriya Seva Samithi (RASS). In tune with Dr. N.G. Ranga’s vision, RASS formed a Krishi Vignan Kendra (KVK) to promote modern agricultural practices among farmers. The Central and State governments not only made him a member of various committees, but also honoured him with awards.

Tirupati MLA Bhumana Karunakar Reddy expressed his sadness over his demise and called it an irreparable loss to the field of social service.

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