On this occasion, his wife and Sandalwood's respected producer Parvathamma Rajkumar gives us a glimpse of the man, who is fondly regarded as 'Annavru' (brother) by Kannadigas.
Simplicity was his second name
Dr Rajkumar believed that beauty lies in simplicity. He would always turn up with the spotless white lungi and shirt. But when he went abroad, he was forced to wear western clothes by his children.
He was a strict disciplinarian. He would be up by 5 am and retire for the day at 9 pm. His secret to fitness lay in ‘not a day without yoga’ mantra. In fact, he was doing yoga till he was 55 but had to stop after he developed knee pain. However, never one to stop, he would go on long morning walks to compensate for not doing yoga. Dr Raj never stepped out of his house without offering ‘namaskar’ to his parents' photograph.
Never used swear words
Dr Raj was always calm and smiling. Nobody remembers him getting angry, leave alone rebuking anyone. He never raised his hands on his children. On a rare occasion, if he did get angry on his children, he would mildly admonish them. Even during shooting, he would never talk to anyone in a raised tone. For, Rajkumar always respected an individual's freedom. So much so that, he never allowed his driver to open his car’s door for him. He would say "what are my hands for?"
Firm believer in equality for all
Those working under the Raj banner were like a family. Every member on the shoot would get equal food and had to have it together. In fact, he would inspect the arrangements, whenever he had a break during the shooting.
Once, during a shooting in Kanteerava stadium, Raj learnt that a few members of the team were served glucose instead of tender coconut. He did not waste any time and summoned his wife and producer Parvathamma Rajkumar and warned her not to repeat it again. Such was his concern for his team.
An eternal devotee of Sri Raghavendra
Dr Raj's devotion is known to everyone. His famous devotional songs are a proof of it. He would frequently visit Tirupati and Mantralaya temples. According to Parvathamma Rajkumar, he had visited Sabarimala for over 25 times. Spiritual books were his favourite.
Loved being in the company of kids
Dr Raj loved his family and during festivals, his house would be teeming with children and grandchildren. He liked to spend his time with grandchildren and pets.
Sweet Jhangri or jahangir was his favourite
The thespian was never fussy about his food. He liked all kinds of dishes. Jahangir was his favourite sweet and those prepared by his daughter. He would insist on rice payasam during festivals. Among sports, cricket and football were his favourite. He would religiously follow these sports. Sachin Tendulkar was his all-time favourite cricketer.
Ditched mobile phones
Dr Raj never liked the idea of mobile phones dominating one's life. If anyone would be on the phone for long hours, he would advise them to make an effort to talk in-person than spending long hours on mobile phone. Not just mobile phone, he never liked television either. He was very passionate about driving but doctors advised against it after he met with an accident while shooting 'Bahaddur Gandu' movie.
Last Updated 31, Mar 2018, 6:53 PM IST