Friday, March 19, 2010
President Pratibha Patil on Thursday presented the Moortidevi award of the Bharatiya Jnanpith to Union Law and Justice Minister M. Veerappa Moily for his work ‘Sree Ramayana Mahanveshanam' (great exploration and examination of the Ramayana).

Praising Mr. Moily for his “exceptional distinction” of being both a prolific writer and a person actively involved in public life, Ms. Patil noted that the award was an acknowledgement of the immense contribution his works have made to Indian literature.

Describing him as a “harbinger of change,” Ms. Patil noted that Mr. Moily had not been a “mere bird of passage” but had left an imprint on whatever work he had done.

In particular, she referred to the efforts being made by him to bring about judicial reforms in consultations with various stakeholders, adding that the Second Administrative Reforms Commission — of which Mr. Moily is the Chairman — had made wide ranging recommendations to strengthen the administrative machinery to make it more responsive and accountable.

Mr. Moily said the work on Ramayana was a “unique structure and a fresh context.” The unique structure was the result of pondering over many Ramayana texts in the Jain traditions, and the fresh context was that of the challenges faced by modern Indian society, especially in the period of globalisation on one hand and the rise of fundamentalism on the other.

Chief Justice of India K.G. Balakrishnan praised Mr. Moily for highlighting the social problems of the present day through his work on the Hindu epic.

Sri Sri Ravishankar of the ‘Art of Living' appreciated the depth, rhyme and beauty in Mr. Moily's poetic and writing skills, adding that such work would be useful in spreading values among the younger generation.


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