Unsung Heroes | History Corner | Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, Ministry of Culture, Government of India

Unsung Heroes Detail

Unsung Heroes Detail

Kovvali Gopala Rao

West Godavari, Andhra Pradesh

June 30, 2022

Kovvali Gopala Rao (1896-1958) lived in Tanuku, West Godavari district. He was born on 19 October 1896 to Gunnayya and Subbamma. He studied up to matriculation and thereafter, worked as a cooperative supervisor until 1919. He then joined the Non-Cooperation Movement and was arrested on 25 January 1922. He spent the next year in the Rajahmundry and Cuddalore jails. After being released, he again participated in the Salt Satyagraha movement and was sentenced to one-year imprisonment on 24 May 1930. He spent his jail term in the Rajahmundry, Alipuram, and Bellary jails and was released on 18 March 1931 as a result of the Gandhi-Irwin Pact. On 13 January 1932, he was again convicted for having associated himself with the Civil Disobedience Movement and sentenced to 7 months imprisonment at Rajahmundry and Bellary jails. He also participated in the 1940-41 Individual Satyagraha campaign and was condemned to 6 months imprisonment on 19 February 1943 and to 1 year and 3 months in connection with the Quit India movement. However, he was freed from the Alipuram camp jail on 30 April 1943, after being cleared of the allegations. He was again convicted under the DIR and, on 28 August 1943, sentenced to 9 months in the Alipuram camp jail. When the term expired, he was imprisoned in the Thanjavur special jail until 10 November 1944. From 1921, he attended practically every annual session of the Indian National Congress. For several years, he presided over the Tanuku town and taluka Congress committees. He was a member of the Provincial Congress Committee's Executive Committee. He was extensively involved in Harijan upliftment as well as the manufacturing and marketing of Khadi. He wrote Krishna's Life in English and Karma Yoga in Telugu. He passed away on 14 February 1958. His contributions to the independent history of the West Godavari district are astounding.