Meet Kimmane Ratnakar, a Minister turned into National Hero

Kimmane Ratnakar is a Minister in the Karnataka State Government, but his recent act of bravery has made him National Hero instantly.

On September 17, he was travelling from his Home town in Thirthahalli to Bangalore when he spotted a Car occupied by six persons sinking in Beguvalli Lake near Narasimharajapura in Shimoga‎. They were waving hands for help.

Kimanne Ratnakar

Kimanne Ratnakar

On seeing them drowning, Kimmane, his gunman Halswamy, driver Chandrashekar and his escort vehicle driver Krishnamurthy jumped into the water immediately for rescue.

Chandrashekar opened the rear door and pulled out three children and they brought them safely to the shore. The four then returned to the car, which had by now settled on shallow lake bed, and rescued the other three occupants, including a 55-year-old woman.

The six survivors were Uday Kumar, 40; his wife Suma, 35; his mother Geetha, 55; sons aged 14 and 8; and a three-year-old nephew of Uday. They were coming from a local town Karkala.

The incident started around 7 AM when a Maruti Swift overtook Ratnakar’s car at about 20 kms away from Thirthahalli. After 15 minutes later Ratnakar found the same Maruti Swift sinking in Beguvalli lake

Kimmane also called the doctor apart from arranging breakfast and free medicine for them. And if this was not enough, he also gave Uday Kumar his clothes, before leaving for Bangalore.

The Survivor Uday Kumar says that it was a rebirth for him and he didn’t know how to thank the Minister. Times of India quotes him saying, “I had started at 4am from Karkala. On reaching the tank bund, the steering locked, and the car plunged into the lake. Water began gushing in through an open window. I made best efforts to open the door and rescue others. But I panicked and fell unconscious”.

Kimmane is the Minister for Primary and Secondary education in Government of Karnataka. He belongs to Indian National Congress and beat RM Manjunatha Gowda (KJP) by 1343 Votes in 2013 assembly elections from Thirthahalli Constituency in Shimoga. He is an Advocate by Profession.

Kimmane credits his companions for this brave act. “I must congratulate my three companions, who swam swiftly and made a big difference to the lives of the six people in the car.” he was quoted saying.