HR Keshava Murthy, senior gamaka representative who was honored with Padma Shri, passed away on Wednesday at his residence in Hosahalli, Shivamogga taluk.
He was 89 years old. He died of age-related health problems. He is survived by his wife and a daughter, in addition to hundreds of students.
Keshava Murthy was born into a family of gamaka artists. He had his early training from his father Ramaswamy Shastry. He continued his studies under the guidance of Venkateshaah. Over the decades he has presented hundreds of programs and trained many students. Through his performances, he popularized prominent Kannada epics. Hosahalli, his hometown, is known for many musical talents.
He has received many awards, including the Shantala Natya Shri award, from the State government and various cultural institutions. The President honored him with the Padma Shri this year. The residents of his village celebrated.
Former Chief Minister BSYediyurappa, Lok Sabha Member BYRaghavendra, Sericulture Minister Narayana Gowda, who is also in charge of Shivamogga, and Home Minister Araga Jnanendra have mourned the death.
The last rites will be performed at Hosahalli on Thursday.