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Business News/ News / India/  Jnanpith Award: Lyricist Gulzar and Sanskrit scholar Rambhadracharya selected for India's highest literary honour
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Jnanpith Award: Lyricist Gulzar and Sanskrit scholar Rambhadracharya selected for India's highest literary honour

Jnanpith Award 2024: Gulzar and Sanskrit scholar Jagadguru Rambhadracharya have been selected for highest literary honour in the country. This is the second time the award is being given for the Sanskrit language and for the fifth time for the Urdu language.

Gulzar has been named the recipients of the 58th Jnanpith Award (HT_PRINT)Premium
Gulzar has been named the recipients of the 58th Jnanpith Award (HT_PRINT)

Renowned Urdu poet and lyricist Gulzar and Sanskrit scholar Jagadguru Rambhadracharya have been named the recipients of the 58th Jnanpith Award, the selection committee of India's highest literary award announced on Saturday.

In a statement, the Jnanpith selection committee said, "It has been decided to give the award (for 2023) to eminent writers from two languages: Sanskrit litterateur Jagadguru Rambhadracharya and well-known Urdu litterateur Shri Gulzar."

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Sampooran Singh Kalra, popularly known as Gulzar, 89, is celebrated for his works in Hindi cinema and is considered one of the finest Urdu poets of this era.

Rambhadracharya, 74, the founder and head of Tulsi Peeth in Chitrakoot, is a renowned Hindu spiritual leader, educator, and writer of more than 240 books and texts, including four epics.

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Gulzar is also the recipient of the Sahitya Akademi Award for Urdu in 2002, the Dadasaheb Phalke Award in 2013, the Padma Bhushan in 2004, and at least five National Film awards for his works.

Some of his finest works include the song "Jai Ho" for the film "Slumdog Millionaire", which received an Oscar award in 2009 and Grammy Award in 2010, and songs for critically acclaimed films such as "Maachhis" (1996), "Omkara" (2006), "Dil Se..." (1998), and "Guru" (2007), among others.

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Gulzar also directed some timeless award-winning classics, including "Koshish" (1972), "Parichay" (1972), "Mausam" (1975), "Ijaazat" (1977), and the television serial "Mirza Ghalib" (1988).

"Along with his long film journey, Gulzar has been setting new milestones in the field of literature. In poetry, he invented a new genre 'Triveni' which is a non-mukaffa poem of three lines. Gulzar has always created something new through his poetry. For some time now he has also been paying serious attention to children's poetry," Bharatiya Jnanpith said in a statement.

Rambhadracharya is one of the four Jagadguru Ramanandacharyas of the Ramananda sect and has been holding this position since 1982.

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A polyglot, who speaks 22 languages, Rambhadracharya is a poet and writer in several Indian languages including Sanskrit, Hindi, Awadhi, and Maithili.

In 2015, he received the Padma Vibhushan award.

He was named Giridhara Misra. He lost his eyesight at the age of two months due to trachoma and was home tutored during the initial years by his grandfather. By age five, he had memorized the entire Bhagwad Gita and by eight, the entire Ramcharitmanas, according to his website.

Shashi Tharoor reacted to veteran lyricist Gulzar being honoured with the Jnanpith Award.

"I will always remember his kindness in honouring me when I won the Sahitya Akademi award. Pranaams to the one and only Gulzar Sahib!" the Congress leader wrote.

 

Established in 1944, the Jnanpith Award is given annually for outstanding contributions to Indian literature and is considered the highest literary honour in the country. This is the second time the award is being given for the Sanskrit language and for the fifth time for the Urdu language.

The award carries a prize money of 21 lakh, a statue of Vagdevi, and a citation.

The recipients for the award were decided by a selection committee chaired by Jnanpith awardee Pratibha Rai.

Goan writer Damodar Mauzo had received the prestigious award for 2022.

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Published: 18 Feb 2024, 06:53 AM IST
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