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`His scholarship was phenomenal'

By Our Staff Reporter

THRISSUR, MARCH 22. People from different walks of life paid their last respects to the Sanskrit scholar and writer, K.P. Narayana Pisharody, here on Monday.

Pisharody's residence here had been a favourite haunt of litterateurs, academics, Koodiyattom artistes, and lovers of Sanskrit language and literature.

"He knew just about everything related to Sanskrit literature," says K.P. Sankaran, writer and academic. "He taught me at the Kerala Varma College between 1955 and 1959. The manner in which he introduced subjects was amazing."

Pisharody's major contribution had been the Malayalam translation of Bharata's `Natyasastra', published by the Kerala Sahitya Akademi in three volumes.

Pisharody also prepared in Malayalam the `Kramadeepika' (production manual) and `Attaprakaram' (acting manual) of just about all the Sanskrit works in the Koodiyattom repertoire.

"His scholarship was phenomenal," says Sukumar Azhikode, writer.

Pisharody's other works include `Manideepam' (collection of articles), `Kalalokam' (a study of Kerala's performing arts), 'Sree Krishna Charitham Manipravalam' (commentary), `Koothambalangalil' (a study of Koodiyattom), `Samskritha Vibhoothi Sathakam' (a description of Sanskrit language in 100 shlokas) and `Kavihridayathilekku' (collection of essays).

The State Government presented its highest literary prize, Ezhuthachan Puraskaram, to the scholar in 2000. "Do I deserve the honour" he asked humbly then. "It is a gift from Ezhuthachan, I am sure. For years, I had studied his works such as `Mahabharatham Kilipattu."

Among the other honours that came his way were the Kerala Sahitya Akademi Award (1993), the President's Certificate of Honour (1993-94), Kendra Sahitya Akademi Award (1995), Sri Sankara Puraskaram (1995), Kerala Kalamandalam's Mukundaraja Smrithi Upaharam (1995), Vachaspathi Puraskaram (1999), Lal Bahadur Sastri Rashtriya Sanskrit Vidyapeetha's Mahamahopadhyaya (2000) and an honorary doctorate from the Sree Sankaracharya University of Sanskrit, Kalady.

He was the recipient of the titles, `Sahitya Nipunan' (conferred by the Maharaja of Cochin), `Pandita Tilaka' (Guruvayur Devaswom), `Vidya Vichakshana' (Kerala Sanskrit Akademi) and `Narayaneeya Kulapathi' (Anjam Memorial Trust).

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