Gopal Sharma Award presented to Arambam Memchoubi
IMPHAL, 18th Jul: The annual Gopal Sharma Award given by Sahitya Thoupang Lup (Sathou Lup) to writers on the occasion of World Poetry Day was presented for this year to Arambam ongbi Memchoubi on Saturday.
The award which includes cash prize of Rs 15,000, citation and shawl was handed over to Memchoubi at her Sagolband Meino Leirak residence during a solemn function organised by Sathou Lup. The Award’s sponsor (Late) Shamurailatpam Gopal Sharma’s wife Sh Shantikumari handed over the award.
Speaking on the occasion, Sathou Lup advisor Saratchand Thiyam informed that with the aim of uniting linguistic diversity through poetry, UNESCO in 1999 decided to celebrate March 21 as World Poetry Day and the day is also being celebrated in the state since 2001. The observance used to be organised by writer Arambam Somorendro but the responsibility of the same is being shouldered by Sathou Lup since 2011.
He continued that every year the organisation has been presenting Gopal Sharma Award, which was instituted in the name of Poknapham newspaper founder proprietor Gopal Sharma, to established writers on the occasion of World Poetry Day. This year also the Lup was preparing to hand over away the award to Arambam ongbi Memchoubi but due to Covid-19 pandemic it had to be postponed.
“The Award was handed over on Saturday as it also falls on the 10th death anniversary of Late Sh Gopal Sharma,” he said.
Saratchand Thiyam recalled that Gopal Sharma may not have been a writer himself but he was a strong advocate of literature movement. He kept a dedicated page for literature in Poknapham wherein many noted writers share their thoughts and ideas. It was in recognition of this patronage that the Gopal Sharma Award has been instituted.
He emphasised that in times of Covid-19 if art and literature is neglected in the state then surely Manipuri civilisation will be forgotten. So, the award was presented by Sathou Lup by going to the writer’s home to show that literary movement is still alive in the state.
Awardee Memchoubi observed that Poknapham has long been a great supporter of literature with Late Sh Gopal particularly having had a firm resolve to promote literature by donning the role of patron of writers. It is a great honour to receive an award in the name of such a noble personality, she said.
“I am delighted that so many writers have come to my home to attend the programme, I always wanted my house to become a meeting point for writers, which has now come true,” she said.
During the programme, Sathou Lup also presented simple gifts to various writers.