The department of Kannada was established at the very inception of the college in 1946. Prof. K.Krishnamurthy, a competent teacher and a writer steered the department exceedingly well till his superannuation in 1975.Prof H. Krishnappa who worked along with him continued his dedicated service till 1983. Sri Srinivasa Sharma also served for a short period and then moved to Bangalore. Prof. Chayapathi who joined the department in 1976 was a great scholar both in Kannada and Sanskrit. He was recognized by his traditional dress like a Kannada Pundit. He used to write regularly in the journal ‘Aria Samskruthi’. His writings on Indian culture and heritage attracted many serious readers across the state. His untimely death in 1987 was a great loss to the department of Kannada.
The department was at its peak of glory when Fr. Valerian D’souza became both the principal and Head of the department from 1980. He was a rank holder in M.A. English, M.A. Kannada and M.A. journalism. He was a distinguished writer and an orator. His “PRINCI PURANA”, the wall paper became very popular as it was educative and informative. He retired in1995 and lived in isolation like a sage at Shanthipura till his last breath. Indeed, he was a distinguished personality admired by one and all. Meanwhile the department of Kannada recorded timely services of Sri Linge Gowda & Shivakumar Swamy.
Prof. C.V. Sridharamurthy joined the department in Dec. 1978 and superannuated in November 2013. He has achieved name and fame in the field of drama not only at the State level but even at the National level. As an amateur theater person, he has acted in more than 300 dramas and also directed many dramas. He is a recipient of Suvarna Karnataka Award for his services to the theater. He is also an exceptional orator, writer, critic, and a versatile personality.
Prof. Krishnegowda, who joined the college on 14th July 1983, is now an Associate Professor and Head of the department of Kannada. In 1996-97 on deputation by the state Government he served as Chief Co-coordinator of Mysore District Total Literacy Programme. During this period he was in charge of designing and executing programmes of motivation, organization and also production of literacy materials. The service rendered by him was recognized and his name figured in the panel short listed for the post of Director, State Resource Centre. He has been a regular running commentator of Mysore Dasara Procession in AIR and Doordarshan, so much so, his voice is one of the most familiar voices in the state. Also he has served as a member of Mysore Dasara Organising Committee and participated in many programmes of All India Radio, and Doordarshan in the domain of music, lectures, humour, drama etc. He participates regularly in “Harate”, one of the most viewed programmes of Udaya T.V. since the year 2000. Besides, he has also acted in some mega T.V. Serials and feature films like “Mussanje Maathu”, “Googlie”, “Anna Basavanna” and “Pa. Pa. Pandu”. He is also a lyricist for the film “Shravani Subramanya”.
He has become popular all over the state and among the Kannada Diaspora in the different countries of the world, to make presentations in the fields of literature, religion, humour, education, culture and other socially relevant issues. He has delivered almost 3,000 lectures, not to mention to a gathering of more than one lakh audience. He had the honour of delivering the keynote address at the National Seminar” Cauvery-A Living Museum” organised by St. Joseph’s Autonomous College. Tiruchinapally, Tamilnadu on 16th and 17th September 1999.
He has published two books, one, a collection of limericks “KAVANEKALLU”, and a collection of humourous articles “KRISHNA VINODA”. He is a regular columnist in the Kannada Daily “Mysore Diganta” and more so in “Vijayavani” under the caption “Jaladakannu”.
He was invited by KANNADA BALAGA, U.K., thrice in 2003, 2008 and 2013.The Kannada speaking community of U.K. received his lectures with great appreciation and, in a letter they have described him as “A True Ambassador of Indian culture and heritage. He was also invited to deliver lectures on Kannada literature and humour in the world Kannada conference, organized by Associations of Kannada Kootas of America (AKKA) in 2006, 2010 & 2012. The lectures and humour performances drew appreciations from all corners and a newspaper said that he had become world famous overnight. He has released many cassettes and DVDs. He has gained popularity through radio and TV channels. He has travelled all over the world to deliver lecturers related to literature, culture and humour. He has spread Karnataka History and culture through his intellectual and good humour speeches and melodious songs to the different corners of the world. The department of Kannada is very proud of his contributions and his great service.
The Activities of the Department: The teachers of the department of Kannada with their concerted effort have contributed to make Kannada an interesting subject to the students. Kannada has been introduced even as one of the Optional Subjects at the Degree level since 1997. The teachers follow lecture method, group discussions, Quiz and Seminars in the teaching and learning process. Sometimes they enact the role or sing to the tune of the subject. They inspire the students to compose poems, to write articles or short stories. They have written dramas and taught the students to play the role, to have practical experience. They have executed their duty even as members of Board of Examinations and Board of Studies.
Prof. C.V. Shreedhara Murthy, Prof. P. Mohana and A.T. Sadebose served as NSS officers and inspired the students to render serve to their fellowmen, through their camps in remote villages.
It is thanks to the department of Kannada that great celebrities like Sri Da. Ra. Bendre, Prof. S.V. Ranganna, Prof. Ha. Ma.Nayak and Prof. Akbar Ali made their visits to the college. In fact, it was the Rashtra Kavi Kuvempu who inaugurated the Auditorium of the college. Prof. Shivaram Karanth, a Jnanapeeta awardee, was the Chief Guest on the occasion of the valedictory function of Golden Jubilee of the College in1997. The feather to the cap of the department of Kannada was the then English Professor of the college, Prof. Gopal Krishna Adiga. He was an illustrious poet of Modern Kannada and the winner of Vardhamana Prasasthi.
Prof. C.V. Shreedhara Murthy and Prof. M. Krishnegowda have contributed their mite even in the field of Adult Education. They have rendered their invaluable service during the Gokak Movement, the Teachers’ movement, and at times of natural calamity like famine, or earthquake.
To encourage the students and to make the name of Prof. Chayapathi perennial, the department of Kannada has instituted ‘Chayapathi Memorial Scholarship’ for the II PUC and II Degree Students who secure the highest marks in Kannada.
Future plan of action:
The department of Kannada with its belief that Education is the manifestation of all our talents is serving with great enthusiasm for the progress of the institution as a whole. A Kannada Havana is under construction in the college campus and the department has got many plans to encourage Kannada activities in the campus. The department of Kannada is indebted to the former and the present Principals and its staff members for their immense encouragement and magnanimous service.