BHUBANESWAR: The prestigious Sarala Award was conferred on noted litterateur and freedom fighter Prafulla Das at a function here on Sunday.
The award comprising a citation, a plaque and `2.5 lakh in cash was presented to him by lyricist and poet Javed Akhtar. The 35th Sarala Award was presented to Das for his contribution to Odia literature through his book ‘Bahinimaan’ which documents the story of social worker Malati Chaudhary. Das has written several stories revolving around the under-privileged section of the society and nature.
Receiving the award, Das said, “Now-a-days, there is a lot of lobbying for any award which is not healthy for the growth of a writer.” Besides Das, veteran Odissi singer Shyamamani Devi and painter Shiba Panigrahi were felicitated for their contribution to music and art respectively. They were honoured with a cash award of `one lakh, a plaque and a citation.
Chief guest Javed Akhtar said, “Our materialistic needs are on the rise whereas the literary intellect among Indians has suffered a setback.” Among others, several literary personalities were present at the function organised at Jaydev Bhawan here. The award was instituted by Indian Metals Public Charitable Trust (IMPaCT), an organisation established by the IMFA Group.
Working president of IMPaCT, Santanu Acharya, spoke about the contributions of the awardees in their respective fields. Trustee of IMPaCT, Paramita Mohapatra, was also present.