Gaining through translations

Literary honour

Translation of books helps connect people of one society to another. One gets to learn a lot about books of other languages because of translation. Sahitya Akademi gave away the translation prizes for 2008 recently. Many eminent poets, writers and thinkers were present at the event. The chief guest for the event was the popular Kannada writer S L Bhyrappa. An inspiring, literary welcome speech was given by Agrahara Krishna Murthy, the secretary of the Akademi. This was followed by an address from Sunil Gangopadhyay, who is the president.

Translators from 24 Indian languages were awarded. Most of the awardees were dressed in their traditional attire for the occasion. According to the customary practice, all
the awardees were awarded by the president Sunil Gangopadhyay.

The vice president Sutinder Singh Noor garlanded the awardees and brought them to the centre of the stage to receive the award. Sunil Gangopadhyay said, “This ceremony was started by Sahitya Akademi to bring the translators to the forefront.” He also emphasised on the importance of translation works.
 
The awards’ ceremony started by honouring Assamese author and translator Malinee Goswami and ended with Urdu author and translator Nusrat Zaheer. As the translators came on stage, their achievements and background were read out in detail. This helped the audience know a bit about them. An interesting aspect of this year’s ceremony was that there were more number of women translators who won the award.

Secretary Agrahara Krishna Murthy said, “Translation of works helps recreate poems and stories in an artistic and interesting way. Consider what will be lost if a translation of any work is not done?

Translation works are done so well that they would leave a reader, who has read both the works wondering if this is a translation or not. They are done very well.” He spoke about the history of translations, stressed on the importance of translations and also read out English to Kannada translations done by B M Shrikantaiha.

Some of the winners were Hasan Nayeem Surkod for Kannada, Meenakshi Shivaram for English, Neelabh for Hindi, P Ananda Kumar for Tamil, Suryanarayan Ransubhe for Marathi and many more people from other languages.

After the awarding ceremony, S L Bhyrappa addressed the gathering. This was followed by vote of thanks from Sutinder Singh Noor. Before the event concluded, a ‘Yakshagana’ performance was presented to entertain the audience.

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