Parliamentary panel recommends transparency in Sahitya Akademi awards

August 17th, 2011 - 6:37 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 17 (IANS) A parliamentary panel Wednesday recommended that the existing selection process for Sahitya Akademi awards - the highest literary honour in the country - be re-examined to follow a very transparent and comprehensive selection method with least scope for favouritism.

The parliamentary standing committee on transport, tourism and culture, headed by CPI-M Member of Parliament Sitaram Yechury, said it could not understand why the Akademi was not keen to institute a lifetime award for overall contribution to literature as the committee had recommended and “how could the new award create complications, controversies and criticism”.

The committee, in a report on the functioning of the cultural institutions which was tabled in parliament Wednesday, said “no response has also been offered by the Akademi about the serious complications pointed out by the committee in the process of selecting annual awards for best translation in each recognised language”.

The panel also wanted to know if any study or survey of the existing translation of literary works to identify important gaps was ever undertaken as recommended. It sought a report on the findings.

Sahitya Akademi, the national academy of letters established in 1954, is an organisation committed to promoting Indian literature around the world.

It recognises 24 Indian languages, including English. Every year, the Akademi awards books of outstanding merit in different languages selected by a special committee.

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