BANGALORE: Playwright, poet and research scholar Chandrashekhar Kambar has been selected for the Jnanpith, the highest literary honour in the country.
He is the eighth Kannada writer to get the prestigious award.
Kambar was selected for the Jnanpith for his overall contribution to literature. Prior to Kambar, Kuvempu, Da Ra Bendre, Shivaram Karanth, Masti Venkatesha Iyengar, Vinakayak Krishna Gokak, U R Ananthamurthy and Girish Karnad had bagged this prestigious literary award.
Incidentally, it is the fourth award to the North Karnataka region after Bendre, Gokak and Karnad.
Expressing his happiness over the award, Kambar said the award has increased his responsibility to take up bigger challenges besides addressing critical issues faced by the Kannada language and education. Born in 1937, Kambar emerged as one of the greatest playwrights of all times besides being a distinguished poet, scholar and researcher.
His plays basically revolved around folk or mythology and interlinked with contemporary issues.
His latest play, Shivaratri, gave another new dimension to the Kalayna Kranti in the 12 century and was staged for the first time at the second World Kannada Meet at Belgaum. His recent novel Shikhar Soorya is considered to be one of the top novels in Kannada.
The Kannada University of Hampi was the dream of Kambar. When he was made special officer of the proposed university, he toured the entire state and many parts of the country to make the university different. He had Santhiniketan in mind and gave a beautiful shape to the project.