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TJ Joseph's autobiography that tells story of his chopped off hand wins Kerala Sahitya Akademi award

TJ Josephs autobiography that tells story of his chopped off hand wins Kerala Sahitya Akademi award

Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala Sahitya Akademi has announced awards for different categories in literary works for the year 2021. The best autobiography award has went to 'Attupokatha Ormakal' by Professor TJ Joseph.

The book is about the trauma he had gone through following the attack on him by the activists of Islamist outfit Popular Front of India (PFI) in which his right hand was chopped off. He was attacked over his alleged blasphemous questions paper he had prepared for his students in Newman College in Thodupuzha, Kerala.

The award was announced on Wednesday, July 27, by K Satchidanandan, president of the Akademi, and its secretary professor CP Aboobacker. R Rajashree and Vinoy Thomas shared the award for best novel. Anwar Ali won the award for poetry. Devdas VM won the award in the category of the short story. Writers Vaisakhan and professor KP Sankaran were selected for the Distinguished Membership of the Akademi. It carries a certificate, citation, two-sovereign gold locket and a cash award of Rs 50,000.

Professor TJ Joseph was teaching Malayalam literature at Newman College when the incident happened in July 2010. Joseph was returning from a church ceremony with his mother and sister when the activists of the PFI attacked him.

The attackers told him that he was being punished for the alleged sacrilegious undertones of one of the questions he had framed. The case was investigated by NIA and a special NIA court in 2015 convicted 13 people, owing allegiance to the PFI.

Other Awards

Writers K Jayakumar, Kadathanattu Narayanan, Janamma Kunjunni, Kaviyur Rajagopalan, Geetha Krishnankutty and KA Jayaseelan were honoured for their overall contribution to the literary world.

The award for best poetry was granted to 'Mehaboob Express' by Anvar Ali; the best award for the chopped-offnovel was granted to R Rajasree for 'Kalyaniyennum Dakshayaniennum Peraya Randu Sthreekalude Kadha' and Vinoy Thomas for 'Puttu'; and 'Vazhi Kandupidikkunnavar' by VM Devadas won for being the best short story. Apart from this, Aymanam John (for translation), Pradeep Mandur (for best drama), Raghunath Paleri (under children's literature), Venu (for travelogue), Aa For Annamma (under humour), N Ajayakumar (for literary criticism), and Gopakumar Cholayil (under the category scholarly literature) were also awarded.

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