Pattabhi Sitaramayya (1880-1951)

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Pattabhi Sitaramayya a eminent freedom fighter and a multifaceted genius and founder of Andhra Bank.Bhogaraju Pattabhi Sitaramayya (b. November 24, 1880 in Gundugolanu village, Krishna district (now part of West Godavari district) in Andhra Pradesh, India; d. 1959) was an Indian independence activist and political leader in the state of Andhra Pradesh.

Pattabhi who had a BA degree in Madras Christian College, fulfilled his ambition to become a medical practitioner by securing a M.B.C.M. degree. He started his practice as a doctor in the coastal town of Machilipatnam. He left his lucrative practice to join the freedom fighting movement. He was recruited to run for the presidency of the Indian National Congress as the candidate closest to Mohandas Gandhi, against the more-radical Subhas Bose in 1939. He lost owing to Bose’s rising popularity and the belief that Pattabhi favored the inclusion of Tamil-majority districts in a future Telegu state in independent India.

Serving on the Congress Working Committee when Quit India was launched in 1942, Pattabhi was arrested with the entire committee and incarcerated for three years without outside contact in the fort in Ahmednagar, Maharashtra. During this time he maintained a detailed diary of day-to-day life during imprisonment, which was published later as Feathers and Stones. He ran successfully for Congress presidency in 1948, winning with the support of Jawaharlal Nehru, the Prime Minister of India. Prior to this he served as a member in the Constituent Assembly, in 1952 he was elected to Rajya Sabha. Pattabhi also served as the Governor of Madhya Pradesh from 1952 to 1957. He established Andhra Bank in Machilipatnam on 28 November 1923. Andhra Bank is currently one of the major commercial banks of India, with over 1179 branches as of September 2005. His great grand son Hari Hara Sudan is graduate of Vancouver film school and owns his own animation company Gravitti Illusions.

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