President Pranab Mukherjee conferred the Jnanpith Award on poet-writer Chandrashekar Kambar at a function organised under the auspices of the Bharatiya Jnanpith in Belgaum on Thursday.

The 46th Jnanpith award (for 2010) was the eighth for Karnataka. The award comes with a cash prize of Rs. 7 lakh, a citation and a public felicitation.

While conferring the award, the President underscored the need for more recognition for Indian literature and to convey it to the readers across the world. “We need to do much more to recognise, nurture and promote excellence in writing in Indian languages,” he said.

He observed that the creativity and talent widely present in Indian languages needed better platforms and greater exposure and there was a need to take Indian vernacular literature to the world. Indian writing in English had sparked excitement and received recognition across the world: “Even greater laurels await us if we can expose the world to the flowering of creativity in our vernacular literature,” he said.

Congratulating Dr. Kambar, the President described the author as an icon not just in Karnataka but across the country. As a poet, playwright, short-story writer, novelist, folklorist and film director, the author in his writings retained the earthly flavour of rural Karnataka.

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