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Devulapalli Venkata Krishnasastri (November 1, 1897 – February 24, 1980) was a Telugu poet, playwright and translator.He is famously known as Andhra Shelley.

Krishnasastri was born in East Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh, India. He was born in Ravuvari Chandrampalem and was brought up in Pitapuram in a family of court-poets.

He grew interest in English literature while he was in his high school.

Krishnasastri started writing poetry from a very young age. Krishnasastri’s works changed significantly after he met Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore at Santiniketan in 1929.

Krishnasastri joined All India Radio in 1945 and wrote a number of plays for it.

He also translated Sri Goda Devi’s Tamil Tiruppavai into Telugu Keertanaas. Other translations of Tiruppavai are available – but they are all word for word. His translation is unique because he had taken the central idea of each Pasuram, made it into pallavi and wove around it the rest of the paasuram into anupallavi and charanam(s). They were set to pure carnatic music, even as they were composed, by Amruthavalli Sundaram. The publication with notation, is Orient Longman

Some of Krishnasastri’s famous works include :

  • Amrutha Veena (1992)
  • Sri Andallu Tiruppavu Kirtanalu (1993)
  • Meghamala (1996)
  • Krishna Paksham (The Darkening Fortnight),
  • Pravasam (Alien Residence),
  • Mahati (The Veena of Narada),
  • Urvasi.

Dr. Devulapalli Venkata Krishna Sastry, who established himself as Andhra-Shelly, came to the lime-light in the Telugu filmdom too – thanks to the story and lyrics he provided to the all-time Telugu classical hit “Malleeswari”. He also helped in the script and screen-play writing to the veteran Director-Producer DR. B. N. Reddy. Dr. Sastry’s poetry was always romantic and passionate – fit for fine arts like music and dance. Hence his lyrics caught the imagination of the Telugu people – from a lay man to the well-known critics of the day. When it comes to movies, his lyrics swang the Telugu-audiences and made them revel in the skies. He wrote about 160 good lyrics to about 70 films during the 1950s to 1970s.They include Malleswari, Naa Illu, En Veedu, Bangaru Papa, Ekaveera, Bhagya Rekha (1957), Rakta Kanneeru, Bhakta Tukaram, Karthika Deepam, Gorintaku, Megha Sandesham, Sri Rama Pattabhishekam

  • Andhra University has conferred the title Kala Prapoorna (The complete artist) on him in 1975.
  • He was awarded the Sahitya Akademi Award.
  • Krishnashastri also won the Padma Bhushan Award in the year 1976.