Kalburgi complete literary works omnibus: 27,000 pages, 40 volumes, 68 kilograms

An overview of the disciplines he has worked in is a testament to his versatility

September 01, 2021 06:01 am | Updated 10:06 am IST - Bengaluru

M.M. Kalburgi was assassinated in Dharwad on August 30, 2015.

M.M. Kalburgi was assassinated in Dharwad on August 30, 2015.

An omnibus of the complete literary works of slain scholar M.M. Kalburgi, comprising 40 volumes of over 27,000 pages, hit the stands recently.

Six years ago, when M.M. Kalburgi was assassinated in Dharwad on August 30, 2015, then chief minister Siddaramaiah had announced that the Karnataka government would publish the collected works of the scholar. The project was spearheaded by Pha. Gu. Halakatti Research Centre, Vijayapura.

“The 40 volumes have been printed and the volumes were submitted to the Kannada and Culture Department in July,” said Dr. Krishna Kolhar Kulkarni, project convenor. Though they are yet to be officially released, the volumes are available at the Centre at a cost of ₹10,000, he said. The complete works weigh 68 kilograms and come in two large cartons. They will soon be made available in Bengaluru, he said.

Publishing the collected works of the late Kalburgi was a responsibility and also a political act, said Dr. Kulkarni who had a long working association with the scholar. “The sweep of his research output, its interdisciplinary approach and commitment to truth is a great tradition for generations to follow,” he said.

While articles and research papers have been published in eight volumes titled ‘Marga’ during Kalburgi's lifetime, his other works had not been collated so far. The 40 volumes have been classified into four broad categories – independent works, edited works, collection of papers and collection of reports, audio-visual material.

“He had edited a vast number of works, including several commemorative volumes and seminars, which we have left out. We have only published works pertaining to classical literature and on independent thematic issues,” Dr. Veeranna Rajura, chief editor of the project, wrote in a note on the collected works.

An overview of the disciplines he has worked in – epigraphy, folk studies, etymology, vachana literature, poetry and creative writing – is a testament to his versatility. Kalburgi, in an introduction in one of the volumes, calls his research a counter to ‘false history propagated by vested interests of politicians and religious authorities who are using it to exploit people in the present’.

Notably, the collected works include a volume of his creative writing – two poetry collections and three plays.

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