When his daughter applied for financial assistance, powers-that-be in the Secretariat wanted to know who Sambamurthy was. Maharshi Samba Murti was a victim not only of the Britishers but also of the gross neglect of his own people of Bharat…an Unsung Hero
The Late Bulusu Samba Murthy was born on the 4th March 1886, in Dulla village in the Godavari District, in an orthodox family of vedic pundits. He got graduated in science from the Madras University and after a brief stint of service as lecturer in physics in the Maharaja’s College at Vijayanagaram, he acquired a degree in law in 1911 and settled as a criminal lawyer at Kakinada. As a practicing lawyer, he proved his worth soon and appeared in the Madras High Court, along with the Late Tanguturi Prakasam Pantulu in some very famous criminal cases.
Inspired by the call of the Mahatma Gandhi, during 1921, for Triple Boycott (boycott of courts, councils and colleges), Samba Murty sacrificed his highly lucrative legal profession and took a deep plunge into the freedom movement. A life of high ostentation and cosy comfort till then was suddenly transformed into a life of utter simplicity and austerity. Samba Murty took to wearing loin cloth in 1921 itself much before Gandhiji wore and popularised it. Samba Murty was a victim of the brutal lathi charge un-leashed by the police (Mustafa Ali and Dappula Subba Rao) under the British Raj, at the very place where his bust size statue now stands stoically in the Town Hall Premises at Kakinada.
As the General Secretary of the Reception Committee, he was instrumental in organising the Meetings of the all India congress committee, held at Kakinada in 1923. Even though he suffered bereavement of his only son a few days before the Congress Meetings, he stood unshaken like a KARMA YOGI and in the words of Smt.Sarojini Naidu, he turned the drops of his tears into diamonds and welcomed the national leaders attending the Congress Session.
In 1926, when other congress stalwarts were still demanding only a ‘dominion status’ for India, Samba Murty had moved a resolution in the Congress Session calling for ‘Poorna Swaraj’. As a patriot who led the Salt Satyagraha Movement (1930) in our parts, Samba Murty had vowed not to eat salt till the British Government lifted the Salt Tax and had lived up to his oath.
During the period of Diarchy, in 1937, Samba Murthy was elected as the speaker of the then composite Madras State Assembly and soon came to be known for his impartiality and boldness in conducting its proceedings. He was one of the founders of the ‘Chennapuri Andhra Maha Sabha’.
Samba Murthy had the strength of conviction to oppose (along with Rajaji), on a point of principle, the Mahatma’s QUIT INDIA call to the British and with this, started the process of his alienation from the congress leadership.
He suffered isolation, ill-health and poverty during the ten years he lived in Independent India and expired on the 3rd, February 1958, at Kakinada.
Having lost his wife and position in public life, he spent his last days in penury at his hometown of Kakinada. Hearing about his plight, Govind Ballabh Pant, the then Union minister rendered financial assistance. He died as a neglected patriot. When his daughter applied for financial assistance, powers-that-be in the Secretariat wanted to know who Sambamurthy was.
True, Samba Murty was a Sthithapragna and like the lives of the Maharshis is of our ancient yore, his life also had inspired and will continue to inspire generations.