Legendary actor Akkineni Nageswara Rao (ANR) has revealed that he has been diagnosed with cancer.
During a press meet held at the Annapurna Studios on Saturday, the 90-year-old actor described how doctors had diagnosed him with intestinal cancer. He said he had felt pain in the stomach and was taken to two different hospitals on 8 October. After carrying out various tests, Dr Nori Dattatreyudu, eminent oncologist from the US, confirmed that the actor has cancer.
ANR recalled how he had suffered a heart problem in 1974 and was told that he would not live beyond another 14 years. He also said he had a heart attack in 1988 and underwent an operation for the same. "It has been 25 years since this has happened and I have been hale and hearty. I am not shocked or scared at the cancer diagnosis now. I have a strong will and I have the best wishes of the people. Perhaps I can create another record of survival with my cancer detection," ANR was quoted as saying by The Times of India.
The Tollywood thespian also said he decided to officially go public about the cancer diagnosis as he did not want anyone to enquire about his health condition. He urged his fans and well-wishers to pray for him and give him the strength to live for another 10 years.
The Akkineni family members including Nagarjuna, Amala, Naga Chaitanya, Sumanth, Supriya, Sushant, Akhil, Venkat and Susheela were also present during the press conference.
ANR has been acting in films for the last 73 years. He is a recipient of many prestigious awards including Dada Saheb Phalke, Padma Shri, Padma Bhushan and Padma Vibushan awards. Apart from these honours, he has received lifetime achievement awards in various countries.
The actor is currently working on his home production film "Manam", directed by Vikram Kumar. The film has three generations of Akkineni family members including Nageswara Rao, his son Nagarjuna and his grandson Naga Chaitanya. Shriya Saran and Samantha Ruth Prabhu are playing the female leads. ANR revealed that 60 percent of the film's shooting has been completed. "Manam" is likely to get released next year.