Context: The Jnanpith award announced in November last year was handed over to poet Akkitham Achuthan Namboothiri. 

About poet Akkitham 

  • He is credited for introducing “meaningful modernism” in Malayalam poetry.
  • Akkitham is the only living poet being called ‘Mahakavi’ (meaning great poet) in Malayalam.
  • Works:
  • Akkitham has contributed seminal works such as Pathalathinte Muzhakkam, Irupatham Noottandinte Ithihasam.
  • His work Balidarshanam won the State and Central Sahitya Akademi awards in 1972-73.

Jnanpith Award 

  • It is the highest literary award in India, given annually for the best creative literary writing to writers in any of the 22 “scheduled languages” recognized in the Indian Constitution. 
  • The prize carries a cash award, a citation, and a bronze replica of Vagdevi (Saraswati), the goddess of learning. 
  • It is sponsored by the cultural organization Bharatiya Jnanpith.
  • The Jnanpith Award was instituted in 1961, and the first award was given in 1965. 

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