Jayanta Mahapatra, a physicist and poet, was declared the winner of the Kanhaiya Lal Sethia Award for Poetry 2017 at the Jaipur Literature Festival here.
In association with KL Sethia Foundation, the award is established in memory of Mahakavi Kanhaiyalal Sethia and carries a Rs 1 lakh prize.
Mahapatra has spent almost his entire life in Cuttack. His work has appeared in virtually every important literary journal and several collections, which include Relationship (USA), and which won him the Sahitya Akademi Award (New Delhi, 1981).
He has read his poetry throughout the world — from the Adelaide Festival of Arts (Australia) and the Cuirt International Poetry Festival (Ireland), to Poetry International at the South Bank in London (Britain) — among others.
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The jury comprised of poet and author Sudeep Sen, Festival Director Namita Gokhale and poet and critic Sukrita Paul Kumar.
Speaking on the announcement of the winner, Sanjoy Roy, director of JLF said: “Poetry has been JLF’s primary focus over the years. We are delighted we now have the Kanhaiya Lal Sethia Award for Poetry which recognises and rewards a poet with an extraordinary body of work. I am delighted that Jayanta Mahapatra has won this year, this senior poet is a natural choice.”