Festivals, Dances, Theatre, Literature, Art in News

AP govt bans Chintamani Padya Natakam: A noted Telugu folk play


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Chintamani Padya Natakam

Mains level : Not Much

The Andhra Pradesh government has brought the curtains down on the popular Telugu play ‘Chintamani Padya Natakam’, which has enthralled people for almost 100 years.

Chintamani Padya Natakam

  • It is a stage play penned by social reformer, writer and poet Kallakuri Narayana Rao about 100 years ago.
  • In the play, the writer explains how people neglect their families by falling prey to certain social evils.
  • It was aimed to create awareness on the Devadasi system and how the flesh trade was ruining many families at that particular period.
  • Subbisetty, Chintamani, Bilvamangaludu, Bhavani Shankaram, and Srihari are some of the characters in the play.

Its performance

  • The play is named after the main character, Chintamani, a woman born into a family involved in the flesh trade.
  • The play focuses on how she attained salvation after repentance.
  • Subbi Shetty, a character in the play, loses his wealth to Chintamani and his character is utilised in a way that engages the audience.
  • Chintamani play is popular across the state. It has been performed at thousands of places.
  • The play continues to engage the audience even today and has become a must stage play in villages during Dasara celebrations.

Why it got banned?

  • Began as a social sermon, this play has been increasingly going vulgar.
  • Subbi Shetty, who resembles a person of a transgender community, is used to portray the social group in a bad way.
  • Obscene dialogues are added to the play in the name of creativity.


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