Author Kirpal Kazak has been named along with 23 other prominent literary figures as the recipient of the Sahitya Akademi Award, 2019 according to an announcement made on 18 December.
The author is among six short story writers who have been awarded this prestigious Rs 1,00,000 purse for his collection of stories in Punjabi, Antheen (Endless).
Kazak, who started out as a mason, later went on to spend several years with nomadic tribes researching their way of life. At the age of four, the author migrated to Patiala from Sheikhpura in Pakistan, where surviving a poverty-ridden life he fell into the family occupation of masonry. At 19, he wrote his first short story.
Later on, he went on to join the department of literary studies at Punjabi University and started researching the culture of nomadic Punjabi tribes such as Sikligars and Gadi Lohars with his work often being compared to the British-born anthropologist, Verrier Elwin.
Of receiving the Sahitya Akademi Award, The Tribune quoted him as saying, "People like me come from the grassroots. So, it is an honour for the hard work that I have done."
Also a recipient of the 2019 honour is writer, politician and diplomat Shashi Tharoor, who was conferred with the award for his work, An Era of Darkness: The British Empire in India, published in 2016.
The awards will be presented on 25 February, 2020 in New Delhi.
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Updated Date: Dec 19, 2019 10:30:10 IST