By P.T. Bopanna
The exercise to select the Coorg Person of the Year title, throws up the names of people whose work go unnoticed. One such unsung hero is K.A. Kushalappa (Kelapanda) who belongs to the illustrious family hailing from the iconic School Estate near Ammathi in Kodagu. His name was nominated for the title of Coorg Person.
I remember Kushalappa (in picture) was active during the 2018 landslides in Kodagu. He along with Radha Palandira were involved in supplying relief material to the families affected by the natural disaster.
What was special about Kushalappa was the fact that he came out of the comfort zone to reach out to the affected people.
Kushalappa did his schooling in Ooty and went to Madras Christian College. He has been in the hospitality business.
When you are well settled in life, you hardly think of your fellow human beings who need help. Maybe philanthropy is in the genes of Kushalappa whose maternal grandfather was the late C.P. Kushalappa, a philanthropist of Ponnampet in south Kodagu.
Through his Rebuild Kodagu, Kushalappa has been involved in social service. Pramila, a little girl who was affected during the 2018 landslide, was rehabilitated by Kushalappa who put her in an English medium school and has been supporting her education.
Kushalappa is mainly involved in supporting government Kannada-medium schools in Kodagu. He supplies books, computers, bags, etc.
There are many such unsung heroes in the community who were especially active during the landslides. My relatives Dr Mapangada Prathap Belliappa and Patrapanda Panth Monnappa reached out to the villagers affected by the landslides/pandemic.
I am personally happy that through the Coorg Person of the Year concept, I am able to identify role models for the community and also throw light on the unsung heroes like Kushalappa. May their tribe grow.
I have brought out a book – Coorg Role Models – which features the winners of the Coorg Person of the Year title.
Paperback copies of Coorg Role Models are available on Flipkart and Amazon.