THRISSUR: Kerala Ormasoochika 2019, published by Kerala Sahitya Akademi, has sparked fresh controversy over the elimination of Mannath Padmanabhan from the list of Renaissance leaders. Kerala Ormasoochika is the official diary given out by the Akademi with many pages on eminent literary personalities.
This year, the Akademi added extra information on Renaissance leader in which photos of Sree Narayana Guru, Parvathi Nenminimangalam were displayed, but Nair Service Society founder Mannath Padmanabhan was excluded. The NSS has come out against it alleging the Akademi had omitted the name intentionally. Expressing discontent over the exclusion of Mannath from the list of renaissance leaders, the NSS stated the people in Kerala knew who Mannath was and his contributions to the society.
The official statement went on to say the cultural institution under the state shouldn’t have insulted him.
The controversy has popped up at a time when NSS general secretary Sukumaran Nair has locked horns with the LDF Government over the Sabarimala issue.
Pointing out the omission in the official diary distributed to prominent figures and organisations, literary critic and former secretary of Akademi Anandan Pillai said it was a grave mistake from the part of the Akademi. “The diary has been prepared with the supervision of qualified editors and such an exclusion can never be compromised,” he said. Pillai added the diary also had several other mistakes.
Meanwhile, responding to the controversy, Akademi president Vaisakhan made it clear it was not an intentional omission. “Mannath Padmanabhan is a person who made history putting an end to the trend of placing the caste title with the name. Moreover, he also worked for the end of Namboothiri Sambhandham that haunted the Nair community. The Akademi can never forget such a Renaissance leader” he said, adding the mistakes will be corrected in the next edition. Vaisakhan said name of Poykayil Appachan too was omitted, but will be included in revised edition.