Veteran poet Shankha Ghosh has been selected for this year's Jnanpith Award, India's highest literary award.
Ghosh becomes the seventh Bengali author to win India's highest literary award after Mahasweta Devi, Tarashankar Bandopadhyay, Ashapurna Devi, Subhash Mukhopadhyay and Vishnu Dey.
The decision was announced by the Jnanpith Board in New Delhi on Friday, reports India Today.
Born in 1932 in Chandpur, Bangladesh, Ghosh is considered to be a stalwart in modern Bengali literature and a leading authority on Rabindranath Tagore.
A graduate in Bengali literature from Kolkata's Presidency College, Ghosh began his career as a teacher, first at the Calcutta University and later at Jadavpur and Viswa Bharati University.
The 84-year-old author was conferred the Padma Bhushan in 2011 and the Sahitya Academi award in 1999.
While choosing Ghosh for the 52nd Jnanpith Award, the selection board noted that his ‘poetic idiom and experiments with various poetic forms mark his greatness as a creative talent.’
The board observed that Ghosh's poetry, while conveying messages, has remained ‘free from polemics’.
Ghosh is a poet with an eye to the social milieu and his poems record both his time and space in a rare poetic style.
Adim Lata - Gulmamay, Murkha Baro, Samajik Noy, Babarer Prarthana are among those creations which have inspired a whole generation of modern poetry due to their unique form and feeling, the award panel noted admiring his unique ‘lyrical and reflective’ style that portrayed a deep ‘sense of anguish towards the superficiality of our society and existence’.
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