Cho Ramaswamy

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Cho Ramaswamy
Born(1934-10-05)5 October 1934
Died7 December 2016(2016-12-07) (aged 82)
OccupationActor, political satirist, journalist, lawyer, editor
Notable credit(s)
Spouse(s)Shrimati Soundara Ramaswamy (m.1966)
AwardsPadma Bhushan (2017)

Cho Ramaswamy (5 October 1934 – 7 December 2016), was an Indian actor, comedian, character actor, editor, political satirist, playwright, dialogue writer, film director and lawyer in Tamil Nadu.[1]


The elder son of R. Srinivasa Iyer (father) and Rajammal (mother), Cho had a younger brother, Ambi who was also an actor. Ambi died on 8 November 2018.[2] He has two children Sriram Ramaswamy, Sindhuja. He did his schooling in P.S.Higher Secondary School. His niece is Actress Ramya Krishnan. The name 'Cho' that the world knows so well was the name of the character he played in a Tamil drama written by Bhageerathan titled 'Thenmozhiyaal'.



Cho made his debut in 1963 with Paar Magale Paar as a comedian. From 1963 to 2005 he acted in 180 Tamil films and directed 5 films. He also wrote and directed 20 plays.[3]

He also wrote and acted in 27 Television serials. He wrote 10 books. Apart from being an actor, he was both the screenplay and story writer of films such as Thenmazhai, Ninaivil Nindraval, Bommalattam, Aayiram Poi and Panam Paththum Seyyum, all of which proved to be box office hits.[citation needed]

Cho played the role of a bike mechanic in the play Petralthan Pillaiya, written by Pattu of the United Amateur Artistes (UAA), which became a huge success. When the play was later adapted into a film by director A. Bhimsingh, Sivaji Ganesan persuaded Cho to play the same role in the film too, leading to Cho's entry into the film world.[4] Cho and Jayalalithaa have worked together in 19 films and also had been part of the same drama troupe.

Frequent collaborations[edit]

Cho as an actor has been pitted against other actors across generations. His comic timing against T.S. Balaiah in Manam Oru Kurangu, or with M.R. Radha, or many times with actors like V.K. Ramaswamy, Nagesh, Manorama and Sachu in many films brought out the best in him.

Cho and Manorama were paired together in 20 films, which included Malligaip poo, Annaiyum pithavum, Dharisanam, Anbait thedi, Ninaivil Nindraval, Nirai Kudam, Therottam, Aayiram Poi, Mohammed Bin Tughlaq, Bommalattam, Pugundha Veedu, Vilayaattu Pillai, Kanavan, Rojavin Raja and Velum Mayilum Thunai and were pitted in a non-couple role in Suryagandhi, Delhi Mappilai and Naadagame Ulagam.

Cho acted alongside Nagesh in Thenmazhai, Ninaivil Nindraval, Ulagam Ivvalavudhaan and Bommalattam among others. He was paired opposite Sachu in films like Deva Sankalpam, Galaataa Kalyanam and Delhi Mappilai.

Cho has acted with the MGR–Jayalalitha combo in films like Oli Villaku, Kanavan, Kumarikottam, Mattukara Velan, Aadimai Penn, Engal Thangam, Thedi Vantha Mapillai, En Annan and Neerum Nerupum. Cho has acted with MGR in many films like Petralthaan Pillaiya, Sangey Muzhangu, Rickshawkaaran and Thalaivan. Cho has acted with Jayalalitha in other films like Bommalaattam, Galaattaak kalyanam, Suryagandhi, Vandhaale Maharaasi and Anbai Thedi.

Cho has acted with Sivakumar in films like Shanmugapriya, Onne Onnu Kanne Kannu, Thaip Paasam, Uravu Solla Oruvan, Aan Pillai Singam, Yaarukkum Vetkamillai, Chinna Kuyil Padudhu, Sattai Illatha Pambaram and Kanna Thorakiran Samy. Among these, Yaarukkum Vetkamillai was directed by Cho in 1976.


He was nominated to the Rajya Sabha by the President of India, K. R. Narayanan. In the Rajya Sabha 12 MPs are nominated by the President of India from amongst persons who have special knowledge or practical experience in the fields of literature, science, art or social service. He served as a Rajya Sabha MP from November 1999 to November 2005.[5][6]


He was the founder and editor of the Tamil magazine Thuglak.[7] Politicians such as J. B. Kripalani, Indira Gandhi, Karunanidhi, Chandra Shekhar, G. K. Moopanar, M. G. Ramachandran, Jayalalithaa, Ramakrishna Hegde, N. T. Rama Rao, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, and L. K. Advani, Sonia Gandhi, Manmohan Singh and P. Chidambaram were targets of his editorial attacks. He was widely considered to be an unbiased political analyst who would criticize the negatives of both the left wing and right wing political parties. In his last years, he predicted that Narendra Modi would do diligent work towards the development of India,[8] and also praised Jayalalithaa for her work in Tamil Nadu.

The anniversary celebration of his popular magazine Thuglak is being organised on 14 January every year coinciding with the local festival of '"Pongal" and is attended by about 50000 admirers as well as adversaries. Several VIPs also participate in the function. The main attraction during the celebrations is the questions posed by members of the audience and quick answers given by Cho.[citation needed]

On 25 January 2017, the Government of India announced the "Padma Bhushan" award for his contribution towards Literature & Education – Journalism.[9]



Year Play Role Notes
Wait and See directed by KB
Why Not directed by KB
What For directed by KB
Muhammad bin Tughluq
Yaarukkum Vetkamillai
Saathiram Sonnadhillai
Nermai Urangum Neram
Iraivan Irandhuvittana?
Enru Thaniyum Inda Sudandira Thaagam?
Judgement Reserved
Quo Vadis
Unmayae Unn Villai Ennae?
Saraswathiyin Selvan
Unmai Urangum Neram
Madras by Night

As Actor[edit]

Year Film Role Notes
1963 Paar Magale Paar(Debut) Tamil
1966 Marakka Mudiyumaa? Tamil
Thenmazhai Tamil
1967 Ninaivil Nindraval Tamil
Manam Oru Kurangu Tamil
Penn Endraal Penn Tamil
Naan Yaar Theriyuma Tamil
1968 Galatta Kalyanam as Vittal Tamil
Bommalattam Tamil
Neelagiri Express Tamil
Kuzhanthaikkaaga Tamil
Delhi Maappillai Tamil
Lakshmi Kalyanam Tamil
Kannan En Kadhalan Tamil
Oli Vilakku Tamil
Kanavan Tamil
1969 Nirai Kudam Tamil
Aayiram Poi Tamil
Ulagam Ivvalavuthaan Tamil
Adimai Penn Tamil
Aindhu Latcham Tamil
Kanni penn Tamil
Magizham Poo Tamil
Annaiyum Pithavum Tamil
1970 En Annan Tamil
Maattukara Velan Tamil
Engal Thangam Tamil
Thedi Vandha Mappillai Tamil
Dharisanam Tamil
Nadu Iravil Tamil
Vilayattu Pillai Tamil
1971 Muhammad bin Tughluq Tamil
Therottam Tamil
Neerum Neruppum Tamil
Rickshawkaran Tamil
Oru Thaai Makkal Tamil
Kumari Kottam Tamil
Arunodhayam Tamil
Soodhattam Tamil
Yanai Valartha Vanambadi Magan Tamil
1972 Thavapudhalavan Tamil
Unakkum Enakkum Tamil
Mr.Sampath Tamil
Thaaikku Oru Pillai Tamil
Sange Muzhangu Tamil
Deiva Sankalpam Tamil
1973 Vandhale Magarasi Tamil
Suryakanthi Tamil
Gauravam Tamil
Pon Vanndu Tamil
Vaakkuruthi Tamil
Ganga Gowri Tamil
Manitharil Maanikkam Tamil
Kasi Yathirai Tamil
Ponnunjal Tamil
Shanmugapriya Tamil
Vayadi Tamil
Veettukku Vandha Marumagal Tamil
Malligai Poo Tamil
School Master Tamil
Anbu Sagothararkal Tamil
1974 Thanga Pathakkam Tamil
Orey Saatchi Tamil
Anbai Thedi Tamil
Idhayam Parkkirathu (Guest role) Tamil
Roshakkaari Tamil
Devi Sri Karmariamman Tamil
Kalyanamam Kalyanam Tamil
Onne Onnu Kanne Kannu Tamil
Pillai Selvam Tamil
Thai Pasam Tamil
Puguntha Veedu Tamil
Magalukkaga Tamil
1975 Aan Pillai Singam Tamil
Sonthankal Vaazhga Tamil
Andharangam Tamil
Cinema Paithiyam (Guest role) Tamil
Unga Veettu Kalyaanam Tamil
Avandhan Manidhan Tamil
Thai Veettu Seethanam Tamil
Uravu Solla Oruvan Tamil
Yarukkum Vetkamillai Tamil
Pinchu Manam Tamil
Melnaattu Marumagal (Guest actor) Tamil
1976 Unmaye Un Vilai Enna Tamil
Mayor Meenakshi Tamil
Rojavin Raja Tamil
Avan Oru Sarithiram (Guest role) Tamil
Perum Pugazhum Tamil
1977 Thanikudithanam Tamil
Balappareetchai Tamil
Unnai Sutrum Ulagam (Guest actor) Tamil
1978 Sakka Podu Podu Raja Tamil
1979 Aarilirunthu Arubathu Varai Tamil
Nadagame Ulagam Tamil
Velum Mayilum Thunai Tamil
1981 Kadavulin Theerppu Tamil
1983 Adutha Varisu Tamil
1984 Naan Mahaan Alla Tamil
Saattai Illatha Pambaram Tamil
1985 Navgraha Nayagi Tamil
Puthiya Theerpu Tamil
1986 Kanna Thorakkanum Saami Tamil
1986 Chinna Kuyil Paaduthu Tamil
Manithan Tamil
Anand Tamil
1988 Guru Sishyan Tamil
1990 Adhisaya Piravi Tamil
1998 Kadhala Kadhala Tamil


  1. Muhammad bin Tughluq
  2. Unmaiye Un Vilai Enna
  3. Mr. Sampath
  4. Yarukkum Vetkam Illai
  5. Sambo Siva Samboo


  1. Neelagiri Express
  2. Aayiram Poi
  3. Nirai Kudam
  4. Bommalattam
  5. Ninaivil Nindraval (1967 film)

Religious works[edit]

  1. Hindu Maha Samudram Vol – I, II, III, IV, V, and VI (Latest)
  2. Mahabaratham Pesugirathu
  3. Valmiki Ramayanam
  4. Verukathagada Bramaniyam
  5. Nane Raja


  1. Engey Brahmanan?
  2. Verukatthakkatha Brahmaneeyam?
  3. Sambavami Yuge Yuge
  4. Vande Mataram
  5. Ivargalai Therindhu Kollungal
  6. Washington Il Nallathambi
  7. Sarakar Pugunda Veedu
  8. Koovam Nadikaraiyinile
  9. Adhigaprasangam
  10. Yaro Ivar Yaro?
  11. Saadhal Ellaiyel Kaadhal
  12. Mydear BrahmaDeva
  13. India Enge Pogiradhu?
  14. Kamarajarai Sandhitthen
  15. Puratchi Geethai
  16. Sattam Thalai Guniyattum
  17. Enge Pogirai?
  18. Embak Kana Onru Kandaen
  19. Saraswathiyin Selvan
  20. Manam Oru Kurangu
  21. En Koodathu?
  22. Eravil Chennai
  23. Uravugal Ellaiyadi Pappa
  24. Edarkaga?
  25. Thiraiyulagathai Thirumbi Parkiraen
  26. Unmayae Unn Villai Ennae?
  27. Janatha Nagar Colony


Following Sanjay Gandhi's death in an air crash, Cho released stamps in memory of Capt. Subhash Saxena, the pilot of the aircraft, who also died in the air crash. The postal departments failed to realise that these stamps were not official and mistakenly approved them.[4]

Illness and death[edit]

Mr.Cho was hospitalized in January 2015 and was in and out of hospital due to illness. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalitha called on Cho Ramaswamy. Ramaswamy died due to cardiac arrest at 3:58 AM on 7 December 2016, aged 82, at Apollo Hospital in Chennai, where he was receiving treatment for respiratory problems. He was survived by his wife, Soundara Ramaswamy,[10] son Rajivakshan alias Sriram, and daughter Sindhu.[11][12][13][14]

Rajinikanth disclosed later that Jayalalithaa had always opined that Mr. Ramaswamy should live as long as she lived. He quoted: "As it turns out, he was alive till then and even few hours after that."[15]


  1. ^ "Cho Ramaswamy". Retrieved 11 May 2018.
  2. ^ Geetha Venkataramanan (8 December 2016). "Actor Neelu on his 60-year old bond with Cho". The Hindu. Retrieved 11 May 2018.
  3. ^ By Karthika Raveendran. "Rajinikanth, Sivakumar, Suriya, Karthi pay homage to late Journalist-actor Cho Ramaswamy". Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  4. ^ a b Cho interview on Koffee with Anu on YouTube
  5. ^ Biodata; accessed 28 January 2018.Archived 14 May 2003 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ "He Introduced Me As 'Merchant Of Death': PM Modi On Cho Ramaswamy". Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  7. ^ "Thuglak". Retrieved 28 January 2018.
  8. ^ "Narendra Modi will win laurels for India in the future – Shri Cho Ramaswamy". 1 November 2013.
  9. ^ "PadmaAwards-2017" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 29 January 2017.
  10. ^ Ramaswamy, Srinivasa Iyer. "Srinivasa Iyer Ramaswamy passes away, aged 82". News Paper. Retrieved 7 December 2016 – via
  11. ^ Obituary,; accessed 28 January 2018.
  12. ^ "Cho Ramaswamy watched Jayalalithaa's final journey before he breathed his last - Firstpost".
  13. ^ "Cho Ramaswamy watched Jayalalithaa's final journey before he breathed his last". Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  14. ^ Ramaswamy, Cho (7 December 2016). "Cho Ramaswamy passes away". The Hindu India. Retrieved 7 December 2016.
  15. ^ Jesudasan, Dennis S. (14 January 2017). "Modi pays tributes to 'Cho' Ramaswamy" – via

External links[edit]