The 12th annual Russian Language and Literature Festival was held in Thiruvananthapuram at the Russian House during which the Sergey Esenin Award was presented to novelist, poet and translator Venu V Desam. Consul General of the Russian Federation in Southern India H.E. Oleg N Avdeev presented the award jointly instituted by the Russian House and the Moscow State Esenin Museum.
Desam was selected for the award considering his contribution popularising Russian Literature in India through translations. He has translated major novels and short stories of Mikhail Dostoevsky. He has also translated Leo Tolstoy and Anton Chekhov.
In his speech, Avdeev said Sergey Alexandrovich Esenin was a true national poet of Russia. "Esenin loved Russia. He wrote about the innocence of village life. His poems reflected also the pride he had for his country. He penned poems for the common people in Russia. With his love for the rural space, Esenin did not accept his counterpart's industrial poems. I do not doubt that the literary festival in Trivandrum will go a long way in promoting people to people tie-up between Russia and India," Avdeev said.
Vice-Chancellor of the University of Kerala Prof.(Dr) V P Mahadevan Pillai delivered the key-note address. In his speech, Pillai stressed that the University of Kerala had taken the initiative to establish cooperation with the leading Russian universities and hoped that would promote the Russian language and literature among the new generation.
Former Secretary to the Kerala government and writer K V Mohankumar briefed the biography of Sergey Esenin.
Oksana Alekseeva, co-writer of the script of the docufiction -Room-8 Esenin's Key, was also felicitated on the occasion. The film was screened before the meeting.
Honorary Consul of the Russian Federation and Director of the Russian House in Thiruvananthapuram Ratheesh C Nair presided over the meeting.