“Put18 ‘Vaachaspatis’ into one body, you get Jithendra Babu” This is from Pullela Ramachandrudu, an eminent scholar. Is this website, then, wide enough to carry a brief sketch of this intellectual giant known as Kurra Jithendra Babu? Yet, The Positive India ventures to portray him here for two obvious reasons: 1) He serves as an abundant source of inspiration, though we present here less than a thousandth part of what he has achieved so far. 2) We, at The Positive India, believe in “Imitation is the best praise.” And we seek to imitate this genius who capsules wisdom contained in tens of volumes into a single lecture of about a hundred minute duration. Yet, we humbly admit that it needs another Jithendra Babu to be able to imitate him into to.
Born to Sri Srirama Chandra Moorthy and Tulasamma – both teachers in government institutions – now retired – Jithendra Babu has grown into the stature of a teacher to millions in governing their abilities and lives! Jithin – as fondly called at home – reminds his proud mother – with his multifaceted personality – of her grandfather, late Potluri Sita Rama Swamy who was a scholar in multiple fields that include folk arts and medicine.
Kurra Jithendra Babu, true to his name, stays ever young (Kurra) at heart and mind, wins (Jite) over his senses (Indriyas) and masters (Babu) many areas of knowledge with his wonderful perspective and stunning memory.
His amazing scholarship includes mastery of half a dozen languages and a dozen fields of knowledge. A proven master of a rare kind of reading technique, Jithin has so far read literally over five lakhs of books and he can quote, at any moment, from any one of those books, including the page numbers of the cited words! Seems incredible but indeed we have been a live witness to this feat a number of times.
His sweeping knowledge covers literature – Telugu, English, Sanskrit, Prakrit, Pali, Kannada, Marathi etc – history, arts, architecture, medicine, music, dance and many more, apart from his professed field – Law. (He is a practicing lawyer at the High court – Hyderabad)
His home at Munagala (A mandal head quarter in Suryapet district of Telanagana) houses lakhs of books, some of them rare and hundreds of manuscripts – many of them on palm leaves – of different languages including Sanskrit and Arabic.
His scholarship has presented him friends the world over. Political luminaries like P.V. Narasimha Rao – himself a scholar and polyglot – used to admire Jithendra Babu and appreciate his skills. Once at a Gandhi Memorial Lecture in Hyderabad, a grandson of Gandhi is reported to have said that Jithendra Babu’s presence made them redundant there!
This simple looking scintillating scholar – like many geniuses – was a failure in the conventional sense at schools and colleges. When asked about the turning point, he fondly recalled the influence of Mr.Subbaya Chari, a research scholar in telugu literature, whose lectures arranged by Mr.Muthyam for M.A (Telugu) admission aspirants in mid 1980s. B.N. Sastri, a Sanskrit scholar, also impacted this genius very powerfully and drew him into Sanskrit studies. His stay at Varanasi, influence of foreign scholars, visit to Buddhist centers etc are some of the prominent influences that went into the making of this mesmerizing memory marvel.
He is capable of digging history back to thousands of years. He passionately and effortlessly etches all that he discovers on his mind’s surface and he retrieves whatever he needs at the apt moment, with ease, to the shock and surprise of his audience. At a particular lecture, this profound scholar quoted from two hundred plus books with paragraph numbers and page numbers, stunning the scholars present there.
This scholar has so far produced around a dozen books in Marathi, Kannada, Telugu, Sanskrit including some translations and innumerable articles in various magazines and hundreds of research papers at various seminars.
Positive India salutes this 52 year old, bespectacled and bearded ‘walking encyclopedia’ with respectful admiration and wishes his replicas all over our motherland!!