Bhubaneswar: Renowned litterateur and poet Ramakanta Rath received Atibadi Jagannath Das Samman for 2018, the highest literary award of the Odisha Sahitya Akademi, at a function here on Thursday.
Culture and Tourism Minister Ashok Chandra Panda presented Rs 1 lakh and a citation to Rath for his contribution to Odia literature.
Some of his popular books include ‘Kete Dinara’, ‘Sachitra Andhara’, ‘Aneka Kothari’, ‘Saptama Rutu’, ‘Sandigdha Mrugaya’, ‘Pheri Chahinle’ and ‘Sri Radha’.
He has also translated the poems of Kabir. A number of his poems have been translated into English and other Indian languages.
He is a recipient of Odisha Sahitya Akademi Award, Kendra Sahitya Akademi Award, Saraswati Samman, Bishuva Samman and Kabir Samman. He also received the Padma Bhushan in 2006.
Elaborating on the contribution of Atibadi Jagannath Das, Rath said he will continue to be a source of inspiration in the literature field for the coming generations.
While presenting the awards, the Minister said that the state government would invest Rs 1 crore on developing the birthplace of Atibadi Jagannath Das at Kapileswar Sasan, and work place at Satalahadi Matha in Puri district as places of tourist interest.
The Akademi also felicitated to 15 renowned writers of the state, including Managobind Mahasupakar, Satyanarayan Rath, Srikumar Chakraborty, Sitaram Bartia, Pratima Mishra, Bansidhar Sahu, Bijay Chandra Jena, Sankarsan Mangaraj, Laxmidhar Nayak, Duryodhan Das, Kumja Bihari Padhi, Prafulla Kumar Das, Sarojini Sarangi, Giri Dandsena and Braja Mohan Mishra.
All the 15 writers received Rs 25,000 each and citations.
Odisha Sahitya Akdemi president Harihara Mishra chaired the meeting.