Girish Karnad, veteran actor and playwright, and Jnanpith awardee, has passed away. He was 81. Karnad was awarded the Padma Shri in 1974 and the Padma Bhushan in 1992.
Girish Karnad was born on May 19, 1938, in Mumbai and was a Rhodes Scholar at the University of Oxford, where he wrote his first play – the critically-acclaimed “Yayati” in 1961. Other acclaimed plays written by him include Tughlaq (1964), Hayavadana (1972).
He was also active in the world of cinema; he made his acting and screenwriting debut in a Kannada movie “Samskara” in 1970, ), based on a novel by UR Ananthamurthy. It was directed by Pattabhirama Reddy and the film won the first President’s Golden Lotus Award for Kannada cinema.
Though he started off his career in cinema as an actor, he is best known as a writer and thinker. Karnad was one of the most prominent artistic voices of his generation. He was an eminent playwright with works such as “Nagmandala”, “Yayati” and “Tughlaq”, which was one of the most successfully performed plays, to his credit.
He also worked in Hindi cinema’s parallel film movement in movies such as “Swami”, and “Nishant”. His TV credits include “Malgudi Days” in which he played Swami’s father.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi mourned the passing away of Girish Karnad . In a Tweet, he wrote : “Girish Karnad will be remembered for his versatile acting across all mediums. He also spoke passionately on causes dear to him. His works will continue being popular in the years to come. Saddened by his demise. May his soul rest in peace
Girish Karnad will be remembered for his versatile acting across all mediums. He also spoke passionately on causes dear to him. His works will continue being popular in the years to come. Saddened by his demise. May his soul rest in peace.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) June 10, 2019
Shashi Tharoor, Senior Congress leader, Author, Former UN Diplomat and Three time MP from Thiruvananthapuram, too tweeted his condolences .
This is a devastating loss. Just a few months ago he sent me the draft of his brilliant new historical play. He was at the peak of his creative talent. Profound condolences to his devoted wife Saras & brilliant son @rkarnad. A flame has been extinguished that lit up so many minds https://t.co/Z8dqtdSx4U
— Shashi Tharoor (@ShashiTharoor) June 10, 2019