Published: 08th December 2021
Proud moment for Konkani community: Damodar Mauzo on winning Jnanpith Award
Mauzo shared the Jnanpith Award with eminent Assamese poet Nilmoni Phookan. This marks a full circle for the celebrated author
Veteran Konkani writer Damodar Mauzo, who was awarded the 56th Jnanpith Award on Wednesday said it was a proud moment for the Konkani community. Mauzo became the second Konkani writer after the late Ravindra Kelekar to win this top literary award. The eminent litterateur had handled various genres of writing including short fiction, novels, children's books. Talking to PTI, Mauzo said the Jnanpith award will motivate the Konkani writing movement. “This is a proud moment for the Konkani community,” the 77-year-old writer said. Mauzo shares the Jnanpith Award with eminent Assamese poet Nilmoni Phookan. “I never thought that I would receive the Jnanpith. I had no such expectations on getting this award," he said.
Mauzo said Konkani, which struggled to be recognised as a language, underwent major developments in the post-liberation era. “It is a proud moment for the Konkani community that the language has won two Jnanpith awards in a short span of time,” Mauzo said. Late Kelekar had won the Jnanpith in the year 2006. Mauzo said the new entrants to the Konkani writing should understand that “literature never goes waste.” He felt that Konkani writers should focus on learning other languages too so that they can translate their own works. Mauzo had won the Sahitya Akademi award for his novel Karmelin in the year 1983. The novel has been translated into more than a dozen languages.
On Tuesday, Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant tweeted “Congratulations to Goa's son, writer par excellence who propagated Konkani in literature, Shri Damodar Mauzo on being conferred with the prestigious Jnanpith Award.