The Indian Honour System is primarily recognized by the Indian Government. The Indian honour system is broadly classified into five types – Leadership, Literature, Civilian, Patriotic, and Particular.
We already have covered the First part of this Article: Award of India – Part 1 (Read Here) In this post we will cover two more awards :
- Leadership Awards and
- Literature Awards
Literature awards are given in the field of Literature, Books, Poems and other outstanding Literary works. There are;
- Sahitya Akademi Award
- Sahitya Akademi Fellowship
- Bhasha Samman
- Translation Awards
- Anand Coomaraswamy Fellowships
- Premchand Fellowship
We will cover 3 most important awards here;
1. Sahitya Akademi Award: The Sahitya Akademi Award is a literary honor in India, which the Sahitya Akademi, India’s National Academy of Letters, annually confers.
- This award is conferred to the writers of the most outstanding books of literary merit published in any of the major Indian languages recognized by the Sahitya Akademi, New Delhi.
- It was Established in 1954, the award comprises a plaque and a cash prize of Rs. 100,000.
- The award’s purpose is to recognize and promote excellence in Indian writing and also acknowledge new trends.
- The annual process of selecting awardees runs for the preceding twelve months.
- The plaque awarded by the Sahitya Akademi was designed by the Indian film-maker Satyajit Ray.
- During the Indo-Pakistan War of 1965, the plaque was substituted with national savings bonds.
2. Bhasha Samman: Sahitya Akademy gives this special award to writers for significant contribution to Indian languages other than the 24 major ones and also for contribution to classical & medieval literature.
- Like the Sahitya Akademi Awards, Bhasha Samman too comprises a plaque and a cash prize of Rs. 1,00,000(from 2009).
- The Sahitya Akademi instituted Bhasha Samman in 1996 to be given to writers, scholars, editors, collectors, performers or translators who have made a considerable contribution to the propagation, modernization or enrichment of the languages concerned.
- The cash prize was Rs.25,000 at the time of inception, increased to Rs.40,000 from 2001, Rs.50,000 from 2003 and to Rs. 1,00,000 from 2009.
- The Sammans are given to 3-4 persons every year in different languages on the basis of the recommendation of experts’ committees constituted for the purpose.
- The first Bhasha Sammans were awarded into Sri Dharikshan Mishra for Bhojpuri, Sri Bansi Ram Sharma and Sri M.R. Thakur for Pahari (Himachali), Sri K. Jathappa Rai and Sri Mandara Keshava Bhat for Tulu and Sri Chandra Kanta Mura Singh for Kokborok; for their contribution to the development of their respective languages.
3. Premchand Fellowships: Named after Hindi writer Premchand, the fellowship was started in 2005. It is given to persons of eminence in the field of Culture from SAARC countries.
There are 2 awards in this category;
- Gandhi Peace Prize awards and
- Indira Gandhi Prize
1. Gandhi Peace Prize: The International Gandhi Peace Prize, named after Mahatma Gandhi, is awarded annually by the Government of India.
- As a tribute to the ideals espoused by Gandhi, the Government of India launched the International Gandhi Peace Prize in 1995 on the occasion of the 125th birth anniversary of Mohandas Gandhi.
- This is an annual award given to individuals and institutions for their contributions towards social, economic and political transformation through non-violence and other Gandhian methods.
- The award carries Rs. 1 Crore (10 million) in cash, convertible in any currency in the world, a plaque and a citation.
- It is open to all persons regardless of nationality, race, creed or sex.
- A jury consisting of the Prime Minister of India, the Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha, the Chief Justice of India and two other eminent persons decides the awardee each year.
2. Indira Gandhi Prize: The Indira Gandhi Prize or the Indira Gandhi Peace Prize or the Indira Gandhi Prize for Peace, Disarmament and Development is the prestigious award accorded annually by India.
- It is conferred to individuals or organizations in recognition of creative efforts toward promoting international peace, development and a new international economic order; ensuring that scientific discoveries are used for the larger good of humanity, and enlarging the scope of freedom.
- The prize carries a cash award of 2.5 million Indian rupees and a citation.
- A written work, in order to be eligible for consideration, should have been published.
- The panel constituted by the Indira Gandhi Memorial Trust consists of prominent national and international personalities including previous recipients.
- The recipients are chosen from a pool of national and international nominees.