It was instituted by former CM Karunanidhi
As many as 10 Tamil scholars and academicians will receive the Kalaignar M. Karunanidhi Classical Tamil Award from the Central Institute of Classical Tamil in Chennai for the years 2010 to 2019.
Former professor of the Pennsylvania University Dr. V.S. Rajam would receive the award for 2010 and former vice-chancellor of the University of Madras Pon. Kothandaraman would receive it for 2011, a release said.
Former vice-chancellor of Tamil University Prof. E. Sundaramoorthy and former director of Puducherry Institute of Linguistics and Culture Prof P. Marudhanayagam would receive the award for 2012 and 2013 respectively. Former chairperson of the Department of Thirukkural Research Endowment in the University of Madras Prof. K. Mohanarasu would receive it for 2014 and former professor of Tamil at Presidency College in Chennai, Maraimalai Ilakkuvanar, for 2015. Professor K. Rajan, formerly with the Department of History in Pondicherry University, would be conferred with the award for 2016 and Prof. Ulrike Niklas, head of the Institute of Indology and Tamil Studies of Cologne University in Germany would receive the award for 2017. For 2018 and 2019, Prof. ‘Erode’ Thamizhanban, formerly with The New College in Chennai and Prof. K. Sivamani, formerly with Karanthai Pulavar College in Thanjavur and with Thiruvalluvar College in Tirunelveli, would receive the awards respectively.
The award was instituted in 2009 with Prof. Asko Parpola from Finland being its first recipient at the World Classical Tamil Conference in Coimbatore in 2010. Then Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi created this award out of his personal funds as an endowment in his name for classical Tamil research in the Central Institute of Classical Tamil. From the endowment, an award would be conferred on scholars and researchers of eminence every year. The award carries a cheque for ₹10 lakh, a citation plaque and a bronze replica of the donor. The award is given for the best contribution to classical Tamil studies by a researcher in archaeology, epigraphy, numismatics, ancient grammar and linguistic study, literary criticism, creative writing, translation, music, dance, drama, painting and sculpture.
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