Book authority brings out Kannada books in Braille

HANDPICKED: Modernist Poornachandra Tejaswi's works are among the 50 books to be published in Braille by the Kannada Book Authority. — FILE PHOTO: M.A. SRIRAM  

In the first effort of its kind, the Kannada Book Authority (KBA) has launched a series of publications in Braille. Fifteen books have been printed and are ready for release in April.

Speaking to presspersons here on Tuesday, KBA Chairperson Siddalingaiah said that at least 50 books, covering all eminent writers in Kannada, will be brought out in the first phase of the project.

These books will be given free of cost to schools for visually challenged people as well as to special libraries meant exclusively for them.

A galaxy of writers

The authors whose books will be released in the first instalment are: K.S. Narasimhaswamy, D.V. Gundappa, Chennamallappa Halasangi, D.Ra. Bendre, Girish Karnad, A.Na.Kru., Kuvempu, Shivarama Karanth, T.P. Kailasam, Chennaveera Kanavi, U.R. Ananthamurthy, Poornachandra Tejaswi and N.S. Lakshminarayan Bhat.

“This is an effort to give direct entry to the visually challenged into Kannada literature, without seeking the help of another person,” said Mr. Siddalingaiah.

Awards for young writers

The KBA has announced awards for 21 young writers for the first book of an author for the year 2009. The award winners will get a prize money of Rs. 10,000 to help them publish their work.

Interestingly, poetry dominates the list of winners, with 13 out of 21 being collections of poems. The list includes two novels, four short story collections and two collections of essays.

Mr. Siddalingaiah said that KBA has invited manuscripts for young writer awards for the year 2010. Writers should be aged between 18 and 35 and the manuscript should be the first work of the author. Translated works, text books and thesis submissions are not eligible.

Manuscripts for novels, short stories, poems, critical essays or any other genre can be sent to the KBA office at Kannada Bhavan, Nripatunga Road, with proof of age, before April 10.