Dr. S. Srikanta Sastri





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'INTRODUCTION' by S. Srikanta Sastri to The Varalakshmi Academies of Fine Arts - Publication Bulletin No 1 (1954)


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Featured: H. S. K.  (H. S. Krishnaswamy Iyengar)                                                 Page 1 of 4                                                                                          

H. S. Krishnaswamy Iyengar (H. S. K.) was born on 26th of August, 1920 in the village of Haleyuru near the popular tourist locale of Chunchanakatte in K. R. Nagar taluk, Mysore district.  His parents Haleyuru Srinivasa Iyengar and Alamelamma were devout & traditional in their ways.  Srinivasa Iyengar was a primary school teacher by profession. H. S. K. had his initial schooling in Siddapura school at Kempegowda Koppal before moving to Dalavayi and Banumaiah high schools at Mysore. His voracious reading habit seems to have blossomed forth during these formative years under his father’s tutelage. His early favourites were Galaganatha, Masti, Kuvempu and Rajaratnam. H. S. K. is credited for laying down foundations for the ‘Kannada Sangha’ at K. R. Nagar during these years. He was able to establish a supply of Kannada newspapers to his native village which he took it upon himself to distribute daily – his first real job!


Once, when Diwan Sir Mirza Ismail visited the village of Haleyuru to preside over a function, his eyes fell on a thin young lad whose very countenance radiated a calm confidence. The Diwan curious to learn the boy’s antecedents enquired further and learnt that he was the official reporter for ‘Tayinadu’! Impressed that such an established news house had for its representation such a young chap, he spoke at length with H. S. K. The witty conversation that ensued forth impressed the Diwan so much that he invited the boy to accompany him for the rest of his rural trip in his car! These being the years of Independence struggle in the country, H. S. K. did his small bit towards the Indian Independence Movement – an involvement he assiduously avoided ever alluding to in later life.


While H. S. K.’s first desk job was as an accountant at a Silk filature distribution agency, his first real stint as a journalist was with “Tayinadu” and “The Hindu”. His second salaried tenure was on the Editorial team of ‘Mysore Commerce” magazine (a mouthpiece of ‘Bangalore Chamber of Commerce’).


After completing his Intermediate at Mysore he moved to Bangalore for further education in 1940. He completed his L. Com from Central College (under Mysore University) in 1943, where good scores in successive exams secured him free boarding and lodging at the Ramakrishna Student Home. During these formative years in Bangalore, H. S. K. had his first brush with titans like B. M. Srikantaiah, Rajaratnam and D. V. Gundappa.


Dr. H. S. K.

(H. S. Krishnaswamy Iyengar)












Known for










Popular Works












26 Aug 1920


29 Aug 2008


Central College (Bangalore), University of Mysore, Benaras Hindu University, Banumaiah's College, Mysore


Kannada Columnist over four decades, over thousand character sketches, chronicling of day to day events for various Kannada periodicals (Varada Vyakthi in Sudha Magazine).


“Belaku Chellida Baduku”,“Mukti Marga”, “Kannadadalli Vidambana Sahitya”, “Kuvempu Sahityadalli Vishistadvaita – Darshana”


‘Karnataka Sahitya Akademi Award’ , ‘Karnataka Patrika Akademi Award’, ‘Rajyotsava Award’ , ‘Viswamanava Award’ , 'D. Litt'

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Mrs. Champalakshmi (H. S. K.'s wife) with H. S. K.

He passed the Kannada Sahitya Parishat’s exam to secure him the title “Kannada Jana” – an award which he received personally from B. M. Srikantaiah’s hands.  Soon after this, H. S. K. started writing for ‘Deshabandhu’, ‘Vishwa Karnataka’ and ‘Chaya’ newspapers. He completed his Bachelor’s degree in Commerce in 1948 and began his foray into the world of teaching by starting as a teacher at National High School, Bangalore. After a few years, he shifted to T. R. Shammanna’s ‘Ranganatha Institute of Commerce’, Bangalore as one of the faculty.


At this point of time, his former classmate, B. V. Banumaiah was in the throes of starting a new college at Mysore and invited H. S. K. to be a member of the faculty.


H. S. K. with

V. Seetharamaiah

H. S. K. shifted from Bangalore to Mysore and began teaching at Banumaiah’s College in 1949. During these years, he managed to secure a Master’s degree in Economics from the Benaras Hindu University (1951). Armed with an M. A., he was able to ascend quickly into the ranks of Associate Professor and Professor before eventually becoming the Principal of the college. H. S. K. spent nearly two decades at Banumaiah’s college before a regrettable difference of opinion among colleagues and management saw him leave the job for good in 1969!  


With no job in hand and precious little coming his way in terms of financial remuneration, he had a daunting period ahead of him. Fortunately, Prof. D. Javare Gowda at the behest of H. M. Nayak and Vice Chancellor Srimali invited him to University of Mysore to grace the post of Editor of Humanities division of ‘Kannada Encyclopedia” project. He did exemplary work here and was instrumental in grooming many a young talent. From 1970 – 80, he was additionally Editor in Chief of University of Mysore’s “Manavika Karnataka” magazine. For a brief period he taught on “Indian Cultural Studies” in the post-graduate and diploma studies wing in the University.


H. S. K. with his family

H. S. K. (H. S. Krishnaswamy Iyengar) H. S. K. with V. Seetharamaiah H. S. K. with Bendre

H. S. K. with

D. R. Bendre

Mrs. Champalakshmi (H. S. K.'s wife) with H. S. K. H. S. K. with Dr Rajkumar and Mrs. Parvathamma Rajkumar H. S. K. with his family

H. S. K. with Dr Rajkumar and Mrs. Parvathamma Rajkumar