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Vijaydan Detha's contribution to Rajasthani folklore remembered

By Radheysham Tiwari | PUBLISHED: 12, Nov 2014, 12:35 pm IST | UPDATED: 12, Nov 2014, 12:41 pm IST

Vijaydan Detha's contribution to Rajasthani folklore remembered Unbelievably, it happened for the first time when Jawahar Kala Kendra organized special programs on the literary works of Vijay Dan Detha’s (popularly known as Bijji) first death anniversary. After one year in   his memory. JKK paid emotional  homage to most celebrated author of Rajasthani folk tales and  a respectable writer of Hindi  who  died at his native village Borunda in Jodhpur last year in the age of 88. Known mainly for his collections of  short stories  inspired  by traditional folklore, and tales  being told  since centuries in the remote villages of the state, Bijji has written prolifically in both Rajasthani and Hindi with minute  details and wisdom.

Bijji received the Padma Shri in 2007 for his contribution to literature and education and the Sahitya Akademi award for “Baatan ri Phulwaari”, a thirteen volume anthology of folk tales retold in his distinctive style. He was nominated for Nobel prize for literature in 2006, though  the  selection committee of the Nobel preferred Swedish poet Thomas Transtromer.

Detha, better known as 'Bijji' in the literary world, had always kept his life simple and confined to the world of colorful folk sensuality. The whole day program kept the admirers and fans of Bijji engaged with different segments of programs  followed by a documentary based on life and works of Bijji made by Uday Prakash and a small play by Anil Marwari  and Sandip Madan.   
Earlier many of his short stories were translated into great artistic films by great films makers and directors like Shyam Benegal, Mani Kaul  Amol Palekar and  Prakash Jha and earned many accolades and appreciations world wide. His story 'Charan Das chor' was first adapted in a successful play by Theatre director Habib Tanvir and later it was translated into a film by Shyam Benegal. Some close friends and relatives of Bijji came all the way from his native villge Borunda to participate in the programs and share those in valuable moments spent with Bijji. “Detha is not with us but the huge treasures of folklores will remain with us for centuries” said Mr Umrao Salodia the DG of the Kendra.