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In this Indian name, the name Madras Rajagopal is a patronymic, not a family name, and the person should be referred to by the given name, MR Radha.
Madras Rajagopala Radhakrishnan Naidu
Portrait of M. R. Radha
Born (1907-04-14)April 14, 1907
Madras, Madras State, British India
Died September 17, 1979(1979-09-17) (aged 72)
Tiruchirappalli, Tamil Nadu, India
Other names Nadigavel
Occupation Actor
Spouse(s) M. R. Saraswathi
M. R. Dhanalakshmi

Madras Rajagopala Radhakrishnan Naidu (b. 14 April 1907 - 17 September 1979), popularly known by his stage name, M. R. Radha was an Indian film actor and politician. He was given the title of "Nadigavel" for his acting prowess. After a successful career on stage in his early years, he acted in films from the 1930s to the 1970s, and then, giving up films, he went back to his first love - Stage.


Radha left his home at an early age due to a quarrel with his mother that she refused to give an extra piece of fish to eat. Radha was a popular theater artist who made more than 5000 stage shows. Starting at the age of 10, he appeared in small roles, grew to a level that stories for dramas were custom made for him.

Radha gained popularity with the success of his stage play Ratha Kanneer. When he acted in the film version of the play,which also showed the versatility of the famous directors Krishnan-Panju, he quickly gained his star status. Rattha Kanneer gave Radha an international recognition and an award.

With his versatile acting, Radha played both villain and comedian roles. After the 1950s, film-makers created roles specially for him, and he often overshadowed even main actors like MGR and Sivaji Ganesan. He was an active member of the self-respect movement, and was known for his atheistic views. Towards the end of his career, however, he started acting in Hindu devotional movies like Velum Mayilum Thunai. He often used to ridicule atheism in these movies and was a follower of Thanthai Periyar, the rationalist.

Shooting incident[edit]

On 12 January 1967, Radha and a producer from Muthukumaran Pictures visited M. G. Ramachandran at his home to talk about a future project. During the conversation, Radha suddenly got up from his chair and shot twice at Ramachandran's left ear. Both bullets lodged in Ramachandran's neck. Radha then turned the gun on himself but it just scratched his right temple.

Radha and Ramachandran were admitted to the same hospital, where Ramachandran spoke with own voice for the last time prior to surgery. Radha lost support when they came to know that he had hurt one of their heroes.


Radha was imprisoned for the shooting of Ramachandran, whose fans then purposely committed crimes so that they could go to prison to confront Radha. He was assaulted and hospitalised several times. His son, M. R. R. Vaasu, avoided visiting him in the fear of losing movie chances.

Released from jail, Radha died of jaundice on 17 September 1979 aged 72 at his residence in Thiruchirappalli. His popularity had improved and his funeral procession was one of the largest in South India, as over 200,000 mourners paid respect. He was survived by his wives, M. R. Saraswathi and M. R. Dhanalakshmi.

Personal life[edit]

His children include Radha Ravi, Raadhika Sarathkumar and Nirosha. After the shooting of Ramachandran, he had to send his infant daughter Raadhika to Ceylon because her life would have been in danger from Ramachandran's supporters. She grew up in Ceylon and later in London.


External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M._R._Radha — Please support Wikipedia.
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279 news items

New York Times

New York Times
Wed, 01 Jul 2015 04:00:55 -0700

It was a stroke of luck, then, when M.R. Radha, a rival actor, unaccountably shot M.G.R. in the neck just before the 1967 elections, and widespread sympathy for his injury helped push the D.M.K. into power. Two years later, M.G.R. used his party clout ...


Fri, 26 Jun 2015 07:14:42 -0700

In one unforgettable sequence from the film Bale Pandiya (1962), the lead actor Sivaji Ganesan essays a musical tete-a-tete with his future father-in-law, played by the phenomenally gifted MR Radha. The conversation happens in the Carnatic raga Shuddha ...


Mon, 29 Jun 2015 05:56:15 -0700

His articles describing the life and contributions of Periyar, Jhansi Rani, Velu Nachiyar, Muthu Vadugu, MGR, Sivaji Ganesan and M.R.Radha have received widespread 'likes' and 'shares'. However, one such article about Dheeran Chinnamalai received ...

All India Radio

All India Radio
Thu, 25 Jun 2015 18:52:30 -0700

Centre has requested the Chief Ministers of Bihar, Tamil Nadu and Rajasthan to encourage supply of free milk to school children. In a letter to these states, Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh said, Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh have already ...

The Hindu

The Hindu
Sat, 20 Jun 2015 04:38:18 -0700

There's a scene in the last-mentioned film that has him wearing sunglasses in an elevator, and when asked about it, he wisecracks that he's a fan of director Mysskin. Considering he has traditionally parodied actors like M. R. Radha and Sivaji Ganesan ...


Tue, 30 Jun 2015 01:15:00 -0700

The Governor of Jharkhand, Mrs. Draupadi Murmu, the Union Minister for Agriculture, Mr. Radha Mohan Singh, the Chief Minister of Jharkhand, Shri Raghubar Das, the Minister of State for Finance, Mr. Jayant Sinha and other dignitaries are also seen.


Wed, 10 Jun 2015 12:30:00 -0700

Rome (PIB-GR-TYP-BIN): Mr. Radha Mohan Singh, Union Minister for Agriculture met the Director General, FAO, Mr. Jose Graziano da silva on the sidelines of the FAO conference in Rome June 9. During the meeting, the Minister congratulated Mr. DA Silva ...

The Hindu

The Hindu
Sat, 06 Jun 2015 05:22:30 -0700

Nambiar, as was the norm, is the villain and heads a gang of crooks. He wears many disguises, including that of a police officer. M. R. Radha, as a father, is remarkable with his characteristic style of dialogue delivery and brings about the story's ...

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