February 25, 2024

Girish Karnad (Actor) Biography, Age, Death, Wife, Children, Family, Caste, Wiki & More

Updated On : June 10, 2019

Short Biography

Girish Karnad was born on 19-05-1938 in Matheran in the state of Maharashtra, India. He was an Indian Film Actor, Film Director, Screenwriter, Playwright, Scholar, Translator, Writer, Author & Autobiographer who was best known for his work in Tamil, Telugu, Hindi, Kannada, Malayalam and Marathi films.

Girish Karnad Complete Bio & Career

Girish Karnad marked the beginning of modern playwriting in Kannada. This Indian actor, film director, writer and playwright works in the South Indian cinema and Bollywood, and received the Jnanpith Awardin 1998, which is the highest honour conferred to literature laureates in India.
Even at an early age, Karnad was an admirer of Yakshagana. He grew up in Dharwad and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics and Statistics. He then advanced on to become a Rhodes Scholar and earned a Master of Arts degree in Philosophy, Political Science and Economics from Magdalen in Oxford. After being elected as the President of Oxford Union and working for Oxford University Press, Chennai for seven years, he resigned and decided to take up full-time writing. He then got involved with a local theatre group, The Madras Players.He was the director of Film of Television Institute of India from 1974-75. In 1987, he became a visiting professor at the University of Chicago and Fulbright playwright in residence. He served as the chairman of SangeetNatakAcademi from 1988-93. He later went on to become the director of Nehru Centre and Minister of Culture in the Indian High Commission, London (2000 – 2003). 
Karnad had written many plays like Yayati, Tughlaq, Hayavadana, Naga-Mandala and Agni Mattu Male. He made his acting debut in Samskara, a Kannada movie which won him the first President’s Golden Lotus Award for Kannada cinema. His directorial debut was with the film, VamshaVrikshaand won the National Film Award for Best Direction for this movie. He proceeded on to act in several Hindi and Kannada movies. He was last seen in Tiger Zinda Hain. He died before the release of his films such as Apna Desh, Vidura and Pora among others. 

Girish Karnad Popular Videos

Honours & Awards

Padma Shri Civilian Award 1974 Arts
Padma Bhushan Civilian Award 1992 Arts

Girish Karnad has been conferred with Padma Shri (1974), Padma Bhushan (1992), Kalidas Samman (1998), and various other awards.

Health Issues, Illness and Death Info

He died on 10-06-2019 at the age of 81 at a hospital in Bengaluru in the state of Karnataka, India.

DEATHDAY 10 June,2019 (Monday)
DEATH PLACE Bengaluru, Karnataka

Girish Karnad Family, Relatives and Other Relations

Girish Karnad was born to Rao Saheb Dr Karnad and Krishna Bai Mankeekara. He had four siblings include two sisters & two brothers named Bhalchandra Raghunath Karnad & Vasant Karnad. He was married to Saraswathy Ganapathy and blessed with a son named Raghu Karnad and a daughter named Shalmali Radha Karnad.

Life's Important Dates Of Girish Karnad

Body Measurements

Skin Colour Wheatish
Eye Colour Black
Hair Colour Salt & Pepper

Personal Info

Home Town Matheran
Nationality Indian
Religion Hindu
Address Bangalore, Karnataka, India
School N/A
College Karnatak Arts College, Dharwad
Magdale College, University of Oxford, Oxford
Qualification M.A
Hobbies Reading and Writing
Marital Status Married
Debut As an Actor in Kannada Films - Samskara (1970)
As a Director in Kannada Film - Vamsha Vriksha (1971)
As an Actor in Bollywood films - Jadu Ka Shankh (1974)
As an Actor in Marathi Films - Umbartha (1982)
As an Actor in Malayalam Films - Neela Kurinji Poothappol (1986)
As an Actor in Tamil Films - Naan Adimai Illai (1986)
As an Actor in Telugu Films - Dharma Chakram (1996)
As a Television Actor - Malgudi Days (1987)
Best Movies Samskara (1970), Apne Paraye (1980), Iqbal (2005), Ek Tha Tiger (2012), and Tiger Zinda Hain (2017)
Salary N/A
Net Worth N/A
Official Website N/A


Favorite Actor Salman Khan

Shocking / Interesting Facts & Secrets About Girish Karnad

  • Karnad was internationally known as a playwright but was also a highly talented film-maker, an able cultural administrator, a versatile actor, a noted communicator and arguably a person of wide interests and accomplishments.
  • He worked in R. K. Narayan's much acclaimed series Malgudi Days.
  • He was a critic of religious fundamentalism and Hindutva in India.
  • During celebrations marking the anniversary of 18th-century Muslim ruler Tipu Sultan's birth, Karnad stated that Bangalore International Airport should have been named after Tipu Sultan instead of Kempe Gowda. He later had to apologize for his comments.
  • He opposed Narendra Modi for the post of Prime Minister in 2014.

Girish Karnad Age, Birthday Facts and Birthday Countdown

Girish Karnad was 81 years 0 month & 22 days old age.