Eminent Psychiatrist Dr K A Ashok Pai (68) No More

Eminent Psychiatrist Dr K A Ashok Pai (68) No More

Mangaluru: Renowned psychiatrist and Chairman of Karnataka Mental Health Taskforce K.A. Ashok Pai (68) passed away on Thursday. He had suffered cardiac arrest in Scotland. Dr. Pai had produced critically acclaimed films on psychoanalysis, including Kadina Benki, Prathama Ushakirana, and Aaghatha. He is survived by wife and daughter.

Dr. K. A. Ashok Pai – Eminent psychiatrist, film maker and writer was born on 30th December, 1946 is a three Times National Awardee. He was practicing as consultant Psychiatrist at his Manasa Nursing Home in Shivamogga- Karnataka State for over 4 decades. His clinic Manasa has now become a household name in the State enjoying great credibility and acceptance as a very successful centre for mental health-as a curative, rehabilitation and research centre. Manasa so for has treated well over 1,75,000 patients.


After his training in India and abroad Dr. Pai opted to start MANASA in the then remote rural Malnad district of Shimoga in Karnataka. His obsession was rural psychiatry in mission – community psychiatry. Dr. Pai had earned a niche for himself amongst the mental health professionals inside the country and abroad for his extremely potent and excellent contribution in expanding knowledge bank of the society about the mental health and also to dispel myths and superstitions regarding mental ill health. He has given talks over All India Radio and various television networks regarding mental health and above all made Feature Films with psychiatric themes for general mass awareness. Most of his Books and all his Films have won National and State Awards and have been screened in International film festivals and film societies abroad.

He was the founder Principal of “Asha-Kirana” a residential school for mentally retarded children serving the needs of such children from poor socio economic background. This project was executed with a patronage of Rotary 75th Anniversary Trust. He was the Chairman of “Manasadhara”- residential rehabilitation care centre for the mentally challenged. He has won recognition for his community psychiatric work at National and International level. He was also the founder of Manasa Kirana Rehabilitation for cerebral palsy, multiple disability, autism and mental retardation.

Dr. Pai has produced THREE FEATURE FILMS in Kannada and One Hindi TELESERIAL on psychiatric themes, under the banner of Manasa Arts, a part of extended community mental health awareness programme. All these films have won national and state awards. Widely traveled abroad, interacting with mental health professionals and addressing academic bodies, he had featured in well over 250 tele shows to popularize the concept of positive mental health ans dispel myths and superstition surrounding it.


  1. The memories of reading stories based on mental health patients are still fresh!! After being introduced by Santhosh Kumaar Gulvaadi of Taranga weekly, Dr.Pai started writing extensively on regular basis. His first novel in Taranga weekly made him household name and it went onto become a kannada movie later (Sorry – I forgot the name of the movie). He certainly deserves credit for bringing general mass awareness on this topic.


  2. A humane doctor, a crusader for mental health, a creative artist,a pubic speaker, a great friend of mentally retarded and above all a family man, Late Dr. Ashok Pai was an institution himself. His irreparable loss is grieved by one and all.

    Ashok Pai has become immortal as he did somethings worth writing about and has written something worth reading.

    He does not die in that sense. While we mourn his loss we pray God to bless his wife and daughter with the courage to bear the loss.

    Following his principles in our lives , we serve him and society in the best way.

    May his soul rest in eternal peace.

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