Prominent Sindhi fiction writer and columnist Amar Jaleel was awarded the Kamal-i-Fun Award 2016 on Monday by a jury selected by the Pakistan Academy of Letters (PAL).
Kamal-i-Fun is the highest award in the field of literature. The award also includes prize money of Rs1 million.
Born on November 8, 1936, in Sukkur, Amar Jaleel, not only has a number of books to his credit but is also the recipient of several awards, including Pride of Performance (Pakistan) and Akhal Bharat Sindhi Sahat Sabha National Award of India.
The 11-member jury held a meeting at PAL and took almost two hours to decide the name of the winner.
Head of the jury Zahida Hina told a press conference that there were a number of names on the list of nominations but the jury unanimously decided to give the award to Mr Jaleel.
PAL Chairman Dr Qasim Bughio told media persons that the jury included notable literary personalities such as Asghar Nadeem Syed, Madad Ali Sindhi, Mohammad Ayub Baloch, Dr Abdul Razaq Sabir, Dr Nazeer Tabassum, Hafeez Khan, Dr Inamul Haq Javed, Dr Aslam Taseer, Mohammad Afsar Sajid and Dr Tahseen Firaqui.
He also announced the names of the recipients of the National Literary Award for the year 2016 on the best literary books written during the year in Urdu and other languages.
An amount of Rs200,000 will also be given to each of the recipients.
In Urdu poetry, the Dr Allama Mohammad Iqbal Award was given to Zafar Iqbal for his book Abb Tak, in Urdu prose, Baba-i-Urdu Molvi Abdul Haq Award was given to Nasir Abbas Nayyer for his book Urdu Adab Kee Tashkeel-i-Jadeed.
In Punjabi, the Syed Waris Shah Award was awarded to Parveen Malik for her book Kasyan Da Paani, while in the Sindhi language, Dr Ghulam Ali Allana was the recipient of the Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai Award for his book Ganan Shanasi.
In Pushto, the Khushhal Khan Khattak Award was given to Syed Tahir Bukhari for his book Tanqeed o Adabi Muferdat, in Balochi A. R. Daad was given the Mast Tawakli Award for his book Dar Kasehi Labzank, in Seraiki language, the Khwaja Ghulam Fareed Award was given to Rifat Abbas for his book Ein Narangi Ander, in Brahui language Taj Mohammad Tajal Award was given to Abdul Qayum Bedar for his book Brahui Stage Drama, in Hindko language Saeen Ahmad Ali Award was given to Ahmad Hussain Mujahid for his book Qenchi.
Lastly, in the English language, the Patras Bukhari Award was given to Ejaz Rahim for his book Sacred Thirsts, and for translation, Shahid Hinai was given the Mohammad Hasan Askari Award for his book Muntakhab Sindhi Kahanian.
Intizar Hussain Award from next year
Dr Bughio said the prime minister had released funds for the Intizar Hussain Award which would be given from the next year.
“Moreover, this year two awards are given for books written in Urdu and one each in other languages but from the next year three awards will be given in the category of Urdu books and two in each category of other languages.
The Intizar Hussain Award will be one of them and its recipient will also be given Rs 400,000, he said.