Dakshinendya Padana Puraskar
Constituted by Centre for South Indian Studies
Nominations are invited for the Dakshinendya Padana Puraskar 2019 constituted by the Centre for South Indian Studies to be presented to individuals who have made commendable contributions for studies, research and documentation on South Indian culture, language, literature, arts, philosophy, history and related areas. Nominations may be sent to indiastudies @gmail.com. You can down load the formats for submitting nominations at this site.
A Scholar - Saint Who Made Unique Contribution to Knowledge Management in Malayalam
Sri. K. M. Govi who was an inspiration behind the establishment of Centre for South Indian Studies and who guided all our endeavors passed away in December 3, 2013. We pay our homage to the great soul.
K M Govi was born as the youngest child of C K Sankunni Nair and K M Mayi Amma in 1930 at Chettamkunnu in Tellycherry, Kannur District Kerala. He was educated at BEMP High School, Tellycherry from where he passed his SSLC in 1946. He continued his education at Government Brennen College, Tellycherry from where he obtained Bachelors Degree in 1950. Immediately he joined administrative service at Madras Government Secretariat. He was a regular visitor of Madras University Library during his service there, which influenced him to leave his job for taking up librarianship as his profession. Within a year he joined Madras University for its post Graduate Diploma in Library Science one of the earliest professional course on the subject initiated by Dr. S. R. Ranganathan in India. He successfully completed the Course in 1952. He joined Malabar Library authority in the same year. Under his initiative the Malabar Library Network was implemented and he managed its affairs up to 1956. Later he joined National Library Calcutta from where he retired in 1987. During his service there he complied and edited the volumes of Indian National Bibliography (Malayalam).
He spent his later years at Korapram House in Chettamkunnu, a suburban village of Tellycherry; leading a saintly life devoted to updating Malayala Granthasooji, guiding the development of Malayala Granthavivaram and inspiring professionals who understood him and sought advice. During his last days he was highly worried about the degradation of quality and sincerity in the profession; and politics especially in Kerala and avoided participating in the professional and public functions which dealt superfluously on things. He lived according to his words and was bold enough to say what he felt about things. His views expressed in the lead article published in Mathrubhumi can serve as the most important guide for the academic administrators and government in developing higher education and research systems for regional studies. But could mould some of the best professionals who considered him as a model and contributed immensely to the development of the knowledge management scenario in the country. His book ‘Library Science’ was the first scientific treatise in Malayalam or any Indian language except Tamil on the subject.
Books by K M Govi
The books by K M Govi include Library Science, Catalogue Nirmanam, Nammude Reference Sahithyam, Nirupana Sooji, Pusthakavum Vayanayum, Public Library, Adhi Mudranam Bharathathilum Malaylathilum, Malayala Granthasooji, Indian Literature in English: A Bibliography, Library and Information Science. He has complied the National Bibliography of Indian Literature (1954-2000) for Sahithya Akademi, New Delhi
He has also written two biographical works on Mutthu Swami Deekshithar and Syama Shasthri. He has written numerous articles in English and Malayalam in newspapers, popular journals and magazines and his memories and comments on the great men he met at Calcutta was serialized recently in Vivekodayam
The contributions of Sri. K.M Govi for documenting our literary heritage has no parallel in any Indian language. His ‘Malayala Granthasoochi’ published by Sahithya Akademi in print, which runs into more than ten volumes, and 10000 pages is a monumental documentation of the books published in Malayalam up to 2000. It is the result of his devotion and untiring effort through almost forty years. In no other Indian language such an initiative has been ever undertaken or completed. Even institutions spending crores of rupees with assistance from many experts spanning over decades could never successfully accomplish such a work in India. This great man in his saintly secluded life devoted days and nights for watching new Malayalam publications and documenting them. The profession has never given him the deserving recognition for his work.
Malayala Grantha Vivaram a project intended to make available through web reliable bibliographic information on all Malayalam books published in Kerala and elsewhere has its inspiration from the Malayalam Granthasooji in print envisaged and implemented by K M Govi. Later K M Govi agreed to guide the project also. Inspired by Malayalam Granthasooji and Granthavivaram, members of the Swathanthra Malayalam Computing have taken up a project to establish an online Open Access Index named Malayala Grandham with support from Google.
Govi met he life companion Mrs Pushpaveni at the National Library. She retired as Chief Information Officer. She was a post grduate in Tamil and has translated Vaikkam Muhammed Bhashir’s novel ‘Balyakalasaki’ into Tamil. They have two children Sri. Goutham working in Delhi and Smt Amritha working in London.
Considering his contributions for bibliographic control which is crucial for research in history, culture, language and literature of South India Centre for South Indian Studies presented him with the South Indian Studies Award 2010. Kerala Sahithya Akademi honoured him with the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2013