Biography of “Latchiya Nadigar “-S.S.Rajendran / S.S.R.- Tamil Drama and Cinema Actor

Latchiya Nadigar SS Rajendran

Known As:  “Latchiya Nadigar “- S.S.Rajendran / S.S.R.

Date of Birth:

January 1928 – Born At Usilampatti, Madurai District, Tamilnadu

Date of Death:

24th October 2014 – At the Age of 86 years- Died at Chennai

(On 24th October 2015, SSR’s Family Members and Fans will observe the First Anniversary of SS Rajendran’s Demise. Let us Pray to the Almighty for His Soul To Rest In Peace / RIP)

2014 October 24 Funeral of SSR

Name of Father: Surya Narayana Devar (Had been sn official in the Education Department of the State Government of Madras)

Name of Mother : Aadhilakshmi


  • R.Pankajammal -Was a Co-Actess in Stage Dramas- Married
  • Actress C.R.Vijayakumari – Was a Co-star in Movies- Lived Together and had a son and got separated
  • Thamarai Selvi -Married (Second Time) with the consent of SSR’s mother
SSR and C.R.Vijayakumari

Children:-( 5 Sons and 2 Daughters)

By R.Pankajammal (First Wife) :

3 Sons: Elangovan, Rajendra Kumar, Selvaraj and

1 Daughter: Bhagyalakshmi

By C.R.Vijayakumari :

1 Son: Ravi Kumar

By Thamarai Selvi (Second Wife):

1 Son:  Kannan alias Marudhu Pandian

SSR Kannan Son of SSR and Thamarai Selvi

1 Daughter: Lakshmi


Drama Actor-Producer-Director, Tamil Movie Actor-Producer-Director, Politician

Education :  Studied upto the 6th Standard

Drama / Cinema  Career of SSR:

When SSR was studying in the 6th Class, he joined “Puliya Maanagar Boys’ Company” of Stage Dramas of P.K.Subba Reddiar. .

SSR  had been acting in small roles in the Stage Dramas of the Boys’ Company and he  was given the role of ‘Bala Abhimanyu’.

Master Rajendran as Bala Abhimanyu

Then, SSR  joined the “T.K.S. Brothers’ Dramas Company” of the popular Drama Producer-Director-Actor T.K.Shanmugam and his younger brother T.K. Bhagavathi.

TK Shanmugam and TK Bhagavathi

When SSR Rajendran was only 15 years old, as T.K.Shanmugam was ill, Rajendran had acted in the hero role- ‘Shenbaga Pandian’  of his guru T.K.Shanmugam,  in the drama – ‘Siva Leela’

Afterwards, Rajendran joined ‘Mohana Gana Sabha’-Madras.

SSR’s Dramas Career:

SS  Rajendran had  stared his Tamil Drama Company- ‘S.S.R.Nataka Mandram’ in the year 1947.

SSR staged his dramas  in many places of Tamilnadu and even in other States of India.

SSR  staged his Tamil Stage Drama in ‘Shanmugananda Hall’ at Bombay (Mumbai) in the presence of popular Bollywood Star Raj Kapoor and his father Prithviraj Kapoor.

The following are some of the notable Tamil Stage Dramas of the ‘S.S.R.Nataka Mandram’:

“Orr Iravu” written by ‘Perarignar’ C.N.Annadurai

CN Annadurai

“Mani Magudam” written by ‘Kalaignar’ M.Karunanidhi

Kalaignar M Karunanidhi

“Then Paandi Veeran” written by P.Nedumaran.

P Nedumaaran

SSR introduced the following Actors in his Stage Dramas:

  • M.N.Rajam ( Born in the year 1940) -Acted in Stage Dramas of ‘SSR Nataka Mandram’  in the year 1947, at the age of 7 years 1947, who became a popular  Tamil Character and Negative Roles Actress
  • ‘Aachi’Manorama-  (1937-2015)- Became the Actress in ‘SSR Nataka Mandram’ in the year 1949, at the age of 12 years, who became a popular-‘Guinness Record’ Tamil Movie Comedy Actress
    Aachi Manorama
  • ‘Navarasa Thilagam’ R.Muthuraman (1929-1981)- (Father of popular Tamil Movie Actor –‘Navarasa Nayagan’ Karthik)- Became a Stage Drama Actor in ‘SSR Nataka Mandram’ in the year 1950, who later became a popular character Tamil Actor
    R Muthuraman
  • Sheela (Born on 22nd March 1945)-  Became a Stage Drama Actress in the ‘SSR Nataka Mandram’ in the year 1958, at the age of 13 years, who became a popular Malayalam Actress.  Sheela hold a Guinness World Record for having acted in the most number of movies – 107 Movies,  in Malayalam pairing along with the popular Malayalam Actor Prem Nazir

SSR As a Singer:

SSR had been a talented singer and he used to perform “Villuppaattu” / Bow Songs Concerts.

SSR in Villuppaattu Concert

SSR became a Tamil Movie Playback Singer in the Tamil Movie-‘Andaal’.

SSR sang his first Tamil Movie song ‘Inba Ulagile Manmadhan Poonganai’   in the music of popular Tamil Music Director G.Ramanathan.

SSR  has sung another  song “Senthamizh Nattu Kaithari Nesavu Selaigal Vettigal Vanguveer”(Meaning: Please buy Tamil Nadu’s Handloom Weaved Sarees and Dhoties)  in the Movie- “Pudhumai Penn” (1959), written by Udumalai Narayana Kavi and with the music composed by K.V.Mahadevan.

Pudhumai Penn

SSR himself  has written some songs for the Tamil Movies and written the scripts for some movies and he has directed 3 Tamil movies.

The popular playback singer T.M.Soundara Rajan / TMS and K.Jamuna Rani have sung the song – “Thunbam Theeraadho” written by SSR for the Movie ‘Thangarathinam (1960)- Starring SSR and C.R.Vijayakumari.

SSR and C.R.Vijayakumari in Thanga Rethinam

SSR was very fond of the unique voice of TMS and he considered him as the ‘Golden Treasure of Tamil Cinema’.

SSR with TMS in SSR's Son's Wedding

Mellisai Mannar M.S.Viswanathan composed music for another song – “Indraikku Naan Pirandhen” written by SSR,  for the movie  ‘Rettai Manithan'(1981)- Starring SSR and Latha.

SSR’s Tamil Cinema Career:

In the year 1952, Rajendran acted in his first hit Tamil Movie ‘Parasakthi’, directed by the Twin-Directors Krishnan and Panchu.

SSR with M Karunanidhi and Sivaji Ganesan

SSR acted as the elder brother of Sivaji Ganesan, in the movie ‘Parasakthi’,  the first/debut movie of Nadigar Thilagam Sivaji Ganesan.

Though SSR had acted in small roles in some Tamil movies earlier  ‘Parasakthi’ has been SSR’s First Hit Tamil Movie.

In Tamil Movies, SSR has acted pairing along with the following Actresses:

  • B.Saroja Devi
    B Saroja Devi with SSR
  • Padmini
    Padmini with SSR
  • C.R.Vijayakumari
    C.R.Vijayakumari with SSR
  • M.N.Rajam
    M.N.Rajam with SSR
  • Raja Sulochana
    Raja Sulochana
  • Kanchana and
  • K.R.Vijaya

SSR has acted as “Abhimanyu” a Mythological Character, when he had been a young boy. However, SSR had a principle that he would not act in any mythological characters, in both Stage Dramas and Cinemas,  following the principles of ‘Thanthai” Periyaar and ‘Perarignar C.N.Annadurai. So, SSR was called ‘Latchiya Nadigar’ / Actor with a Principle 

SSR As a Movie Director:

The following are the 3 Tamil Movies Directed by SSR :

  • Thanga Rethinam (1960)-Starring SSR and C.R.Vijayakumari
    C.R.Vijayakumari in Thanga Rethinam
  • Alli  (1964) -Starring SSR and C.R.Vijaykumari along with M.R.Radha and 
  • Mani Magudam (1966)-Based on his Stage Drama ‘Mani Magudam’, Starring SSR, J Jayalalitha, C.R.Vijayalakshmi and M.N.Nambiar.
    Manimagudam Movie

SSR has acted in 70 Tamil Movies and the following are some of his notable Movies:-

The following is a List of some notable Tamil Movies out of the more than 70 Movies acted by SSR:-

Name of the Movie / Co-Star(s)/Remarks /Year:

Paraasakthi / Sivaji Ganesan, Pandaribai / SSR’s the First / Debut movie – Directed by Krishnan-Panchu /1952

Parasakthi Movie

Retha kanneer / M.R.Radha, Sivaranjani / Directed by Krishnan – Panchu /1954

SSR in M.R.Radha's Retha Kanneer Movie

Kuladeivam /M.N.Rajam/Directed by Krishanan-Panchu/ 1956

Kuladeivam Movie

Mudhalali     / Devika, M.N.Rajam / Directed by Muktha V. Srinivasan / 1957

Anbu Enge / K.Balaji, Devika /Directed by D.Yoganand/1958

Petra Maganai Vitra Annai /C.R.Vijayakumari/ /The First Movie paired with C.R.Vijayakumari/1958

Pillai Kani Amudhu/E.V.Saroja / Directed by M.A.Thiurmugam /1958

Pillai Kani Amudhu Movie

President Panchatcharam / B.Saroja Devi / Directed By A.Bhim Singh/  /1959

President Panchatcharam Movie

Sivagangai Seemai / Kumari Kamala, M.N.Rajam / Produced by Kannadasan /1959

SSR and Kumari Kamala in Sivagangai Seemai Movie

Raja Desingu / M.G.Ramachandran (MGR), P.Bhanumathi, Padmini / The first movie acted with MGR / 1960

SSR with MGR and Kannadasan in Raja Desingu Sets

Dheivathin Dheivam / C.R.Vijayakumari / Directed by K.S.Gopalakrishnan / 1962

Deivathin Deivam Movie

Kanchi Thalaivan / M.G.Ramachandran, P.Bhanumathi, C.R.Vijayakumari  / Story, Screenplay, Production by ‘Kalaignar M Karunanidhi / 1963

SSR with MGR in Kanchi Thalaivan Movie
SSR with MGR and M Karunanidhi

Kattu Roja  / Padmini / Film by Modern Theatres-Directed by A.Subbarao /1963

Kattu Roja Movie

Naanum Oru Penn / C.R.Vijayakumari / AVM Productions / The film won the ‘National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Tamil’ at 11th National Film Awards and  also won ‘Filmfare Award for Best Film 1963 ’ and ‘Cinema Fans Award for Best film 1963’/ 1963

Naanum Oru Penn Movie

Vanambadi  / R.Muthuraman, Devika, Master Kamal Hassan  / Produced by Kannadasan /  1963

Vanambadi Movie

Poompuhar / C.R.Vijayakumari, Rajashree / Based on the Tamil Epic ‘Silappadhigaaram’ –Screenplay by ‘Kalaignar’ M Karunanidhi / 1964

Poompuhar Movie

Kakkum Karangal / C.R.Vijayakumari, Sivakumar/ The first Film for Sivakumar / 1965

Kakkum Karangal Movie

Kai Kodutha Deivam / Sivaji Ganesan, Savithiri, K.R.Vijaya / Directed by K.S.Gopalakrishan-The movie won ‘National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Tamil’ – President’s Silver Medal in the year  1965 / 1964

Kai Kodutha Deivam Movie

Mani Magudam / C.R.Vijayakumari, J Jayalalitha / Based on SSR’s Stage Drama ‘Mani Magudam’ acted by ‘Aachi ‘-Manorama-Produced and Directed by SSR-/  1966

SSR with J Jayalalitha in Manimagudam Movie

Avan Pithana? / C.R.Vijayakumari, Anjali Devi /Directed by P.Neelakantan- Screenplay by ‘Kalaignar’M.Karunanidhi /1966

SSR with C.R.Vijaykumari in Avan Pithana Movie

Kula Vilakku  / Gemini Ganesan, B.Saroja Devi / Directed by K.S.Gopalakrishnan /  1969

Ethiroli /Sivaji Ganesan, K.R.Vijaya, Sivakumar, Lakshmi, Jyothilakshmi / Produced and Directed by K.Balachander  /1970

K Balachandar's Ethiroli Movie

Anbin Mugavari / Mohan, Viji, Sasikala, Sathyaraj / Directed by Manivannan / 1985

Anbin Mugavari Movie

Rajali / Ramki, Roja, Napolean / Directed by Velu .Prabhakaran /  1996

Rajali Movie

Dharma / Vijayakanth, Preetha, Vijayakumar, Shilpa / Directed by KR / 1998

Dharma Movie

Vallarasu / Vijayakanth, Devayani / Produced by Vijayakanth /  2000

Vallarasu Movie

Rishi / Sarath Kumar, Meena, Prakashraj, Sanghavi, Arun Pandian, S.V.Sekar /Directed by Sundar C / 2001

Rishi Movie

Dum / Silambarasan T.R., Rakshita, Ashish Vidyarthi /  Silambarasan, Rakshitha, Ashish Vidyarthi /The last Movie/2003

Dum Movie

The Political Career of SSR:

SS Rajendran joined the ‘Dravida Munnetra Kazhagm’/DMK in the year 1949, when the party was formed by ‘Perarignar C.N.Annadurai coming out of the Dravidar Kazhagam / DK of Thanthai EV Ramasamy Periyar, . SSR is one of the Founder-Member of the party-DMK.

CN Annadurai with Thanthai EVR Periyar
CN Annadurai with M Karunanidhi

SSR had  purchased land in Teynampet and donated to the DMK party for its office ‘Anbagam’.

Anbagam DMK Office at Teynampet Chennai

SSR was the first ‘Member of the Legislative Assembly’ / M.L.A. of Madras State, elected from the Theni Constituency as a DMK candidate in the year 1962.

Afterwards, SSR was elected as a ‘Member of the Parliament’/MP- Rajya Sabha.

SSR joined the ‘All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam’ and became a MLA, elected from Aandipatti Constituency, as a candidate of the AAIDMK of MGR in the year 1980.

SSR with MGR

A village ‘Aathuppatty’ near  Andipatti area was washed away in the floods. SSR purchased 5 acres of land with his own funds and donated to the villagers of ‘Aathuppatty’ and the new village formed in the land is named after him- ‘Rajendra Nagar’.

Awards and Honours Given to SSR:

The Presiden’s Award / State and Central Awards / 7 Times

Founder Member of the ‘South Indian Artiste’s Association’ / SIAA

SSR has been elected as the President of SIAA 3 times

Thyagaraja Bhagavathar Award Awarded by the State Government of Tamilnaud in the year 1999

Kalaimamani Award /State Government of Tamilnadu

Auto-Biography of SS Rajendran:

The Auto-Biography of SSR, titled “Naan Vandha Paadhai’ “/ “The Path I Came Along”written and kept by him was published after his death by Agani Publising House of Poet Vennila.

SSR's Auto Biography Naan Vandha Paadhai

Tamil Poet Vennila

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