Kalaignar M. Karunanidhi Classical Tamil Award

Kalaignar M. Karunanidhi, has created out of his personal funds an endowment in his name for Classical Tamil Research in the Central Institute of Classical Tamil. From the endowment, an Award will be given to scholars and researchers of eminence every year.

The award is one of the highest honours conferred in India.

The award carries a cheque for Rs. 10,00,000, a citation plaque and a bronze replica of Kalaignar M. Karunanidhi.

The Award is scheduled to be presented to the candidate every year on the occasion of the birthday of the donor, i.e., 3 June.

The award is given for the best contribution to classical Tamil studies by a researcher or a research institution in the following areas leading to the creation of new knowledge in Ancient Tamil Culture and Civilization and gaining international recognition:

1. Archaeology 5. Literary Criticism
2. Epigraphy 6. Creative Writing
3. Numismatics 7. Translation
4. Ancient Grammar and Linguistic Study 8. Music, Dance, Drama, Painting and Sculpture

The award is given for a single work of great erudition or for a lifetime contribution depending on its uniqueness, excellence and international recognition. The awardee may be an eminent scholar of any nationality and the work may be in any language provided that it attracts global attention.

So far, 11 scholars have been given this award. The details of the awardees year wise are as follows:

S.No Scholar Name year
1 Prof. Asko Parpola 2009
2 Dr. V.S. Rajam 2010
3 Prof. Pon. kothandaraman 2011
4 Prof. E. Sundaramoorthy 2012
5 Prof. P Marudanayagam 2013
6 Prof. K. Mohanarasu 2014
7 Prof. Maraimalai Ilakkuvanar 2015
8 Prof. K. Rajan 2016
9 Prof. Ulrike Niklas 2017
10 Kavignar Erode Thamizhanban 2018
11 Prof. K. Sivamani 2019