New Delhi: Assamese writer Nilmani Phookan and Konkani writer Damodar Mauzo have been awarded the prestigious Jnanpith Award. Phookan won the 56th Jnanpith Award, announced for the year 2020 and Konkani short story writer and novelist Damodar Mauzo won the 57th Jnanpith Award for this year.
Nilmani, who was honoured with the Padma Shri in 1990, has won the Assamese Sahitya Akademi Award in 1981 and the Kendra Sahitya Akademi Fellowship in 2002. Surya Heno Nami Ahe Ee Nadiyedi, Fuli Thaka Suryamukhi Fultor Fale and Kabita are his notable works.
Damodar Mauzo is a Goan short story writer, novelist, critic and scriptwriter. His novel Carmeline won the Sahitya Akademi Award in 1983 and bagged the Vimala V Pai Vishwa Konkani Literary Award for his novel Tsunami Simon in 2011. He has served on the Sahitya Akademi’s Executive Board, General Council and Finance Committee. His major works are Gothen, Sagrana, Rumad Full, Sapan Mogi, Tsunami Simon, Sood, Carmeline and Chittarangi. Mauzo, a well-known activist also struck limelight as he spoke against ‘shrinking’ freedom of expression in India following the murder of Prof MM Kalburgi in 2015. The Karnataka police found that his life was under threat during the investigations into the murder of Gauri Lankesh.
The prestigious award was last won by Malayalam poet Akkitham Achyuthan Namboothiri in 2019.
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