Pala Narayanan Nair

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Mahakavi Pala Narayanan Nair (Malayalam: പാലാ നാരായണന്‍ നായര്‍) (11 December 1911 – 11 June 2008) was an Indian poet. He wrote his most celebrated work, "Keralam Valarunnu", in 1953 in eight volumes when the concept of a unified state was spreading. This masterpiece earned him the title of Mahakavi.[citation needed] He wrote more than 5,000 poems, compiled in about 48 collections.

Jinoop J Nair directed a documentary about the life of Pala Narayanan Nair, Pala: Kavithakalude Palazhy.


Nair was born to Keezhpallil Sankaran and Nair-Parvathy Amma in Pala on December 11, 1911. He was educated at VM School and St. Thomas School in Pala. Nair started his career as a teacherin ponjar andlater joined the military and participated in World War II. A teacher by profession, he published his first poetry collection, Pookkal, in 1935. He joined the Publication Department of Travancore University as a pundit and received his M.A. (Malayalam) in 1956. Nair worked as a Malayalam professor at Alphonsa College, Pala. He was the first secretary of Kerala Sahitya Akademi and the Malayalam professor in NSS[disambiguation needed] College, Kottiyam, in Kollam district.


He received many awards: Kerala Sahitya Akademi Award (1976; for the poem "Vilakku Koluthoo"), Vallathol Award (1991), FOKANA Kerala Ganam Award (1992), Ulloor Award (1999), Ezhuthachan Puraskaram (2000), [Asan Smaraka Kavitha Puraskaram]] and Mathrubhumi Literary Award (2002). The Kerala Sahitya Akademi honoured him with a fellowship in 2006.


Among his poems, "Amritakala" was a masterpiece. "Keralam Valarunnu" was another outstanding anthologies of poems. Poet and Gandhian, Pala Narayan Nair envisioned a unified Kerala in his 1948 poem "Keralam Valarunnu". He was distressed by the increase in suicide rates in Kerala and was concerned by the rise of sectarianism and extremism in the state. He saw a lack of direction among the youth and wasteful expenditure by households as reasons for social evils. He proposed that the use of agricultural land for other purposes would lead to the destruction of the Malayali identity.


Amruthakala, an anthology of poems, is his masterpiece. He has authored as many as 43 literary works that include: Keralam Valarunnu, Shanthi-vaikhari, Kasturba, Aalippazhom and Anthyapuja.