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21 January 1943 |
Alabol, Balikuda, Jagatsinghpur, Odisha
|Education||M.A. (Education), Ph.D. (Educational Psychology) |
|Alma mater||Ravenshaw College|
|Notable work(s)||Yajnaseni, Sheelapadma|
|Notable award(s)||Jnanpith Award
Pratibha Ray is an Indian academic and writer. She was born on 21 January 1943, at Alabol, a remote village in the Balikuda area of Jagatsinghpur district formerly part of Cuttack district of Orissa state. She was the first woman to win the Moortidevi Award in 1991.
She is an eminent fiction writer in contemporary India. She writes novels and short stories in her mother tongue Oriya. Her first novel Barsha Basanta Baishakha (1974)  proved itself as a best seller for its readability among rural female half literate readers. She attributed the boldness, the revolt and humanism in her literature, to the impact of Vaishnavism[who?], her family religion, which preaches no caste, no class, and also due to the influence of her Gandhian teacher-father, Parashuram Das.
Her search for a "social order based on equality, love, peace and integration", continues, since she first penned at the age of nine. When she wrote for a social order, based on equality without class, caste, religion or sex discriminations, some of her critics branded her as a communist, and some as feminist[verification needed]. But she says "I am a humanist. Men and women have been created differently for the healthy functioning of society. The specialities women have been endowed with should be nurtured further. As a human being however, woman is equal to man".
She continued her writing career even after her marriage and raising a family of three children, for which she credits her parents and her husband. She completed her Masters in Education, and Ph.D. in Educational Psychology while raising her children. Her post-doctoral research was on 'Tribalism and Criminology of Bondo Highlander', one of the most primitive tribes of Orissa, India.
She started her professional career as a school teacher, and later she taught in various Government Colleges in Orissa for thirty years. She has guided doctoral research and has published many research articles. She took voluntary retirement as a Professor of Education from State Government Service and joined as Member, Public Service Commission of Orissa.
She has active interest in social reform and has fought against social injustice on many occasions. One important incident in her life is protesting against colour (Caste/ religion) discrimination by the high priests of Jagannath Temple at Puri. Now she is fighting a defamation case lodged by the priests against her for her newspaper article in which she wrote against the undesirable behaviour of the priests, titled "The Colour of Religion is Black" (Dharmara Ranga Kala). She works tirelessly in the cyclone-affected areas after the Orissa's Super Cyclone of October,1999 and she is working for rehabilitation of the orphans and widows of Cyclone affected areas.
Travelled extensively within India to participate in various National Literary and Educational Conferences. Visited five Republics of the erstwhile U.S.S.R in 1986 in a cultural exchange programme sponsored by ISCUS. Had represented India as an Indian Writer in the India Fair in Australia " India Today 94" sponsored by Indian Council for Cultural Relations, New Delhi in 1994. Gave readings and talks on Indian Literature and Languages in several Universities of Australia. Visited USA, U.K and France on speaking tours. Represented India as an Indian Writer in the 'India Festival' in Bangladesh in 1996. Attended '7th International Interdisciplinary Congress on Women' in University of Tromsoe, Norway in June 1999 as an Indian delegate. Visited Norway, Sweden, Finland & Denmark on speaking tour in 1999. Visited Zurich, Switzerland in 2000 to present a paper in the 'Third European Conference on Gender Equality in Higher Education'.
She is a member of a number of learned societies. She is connected with Indian Council for Cultural Relations, Central Board of Film Certification, Indian Red Cross Society, India International Centre, National Book Trust of India, Central Academy of Letters etc. She has travelled extensively in India and abroad to participate in various Literary & Educational Conferences. She has won a number of National and State awards for her creative writing.
- Barsa Basanta Baishakha, 1974
- Aranya"', 1977
- Nishidha Prithivi, 1978
- Parichya, 1979
- Aparichita, 1979. (A film was made & won Best Film-Story award from Orissa State Govt., Department of Culture)
- Punyatoya""the story of village girl meghi, 1979. (Tr. To Hindi)
- Meghamedura, 1980
- Ashabari, 1980
- Ayamarambha, 1981
- Nilatrishna, 1981. (Tr. to Hindi)
- Samudrara Swara, 1982. (Tr. to Hindi)
- Shilapadma, 1983. (Orissa Sahitya Academy Award, 1985; Tr. to Assamese, Hindi, Marathi, Malayalam, Punjabi and English)
- Yajnaseni, 1984 (Moorti Devi Award,1991 and Sarala Award, 1990. Tr. to English, Hindi, Malayalam, Marathi, Assamese, Bengali, Gujarati, Hungerian) 
- Dehatit, 1986
- Uttarmarg, 1988. (Tr. to Hindi & Punjabi)
- Adibhoomi (Tr. to Hindi & English)
- Mahamoh, 1998 (To be published in Hindi, Bengali & Malayalam)
- Magnamati, 2004
- Maitri Padapara Shakha Prashakha (USSR), 1990
- Dura Dwividha (UK, France), 1999
- Aparadhira Sweda (Australia), 2000
- Samanya Kathana - 1978
- Gangashiuli - 1979
- Asamapta - 1980
- Aikatana - 1981
- Anabana - 1983
- Hatabaksa - 1983
- Ghasa O Akasa
- Chandrabhaga O Chandrakala - 1984
- Shrestha Galpa - 1984
- Abykta (made into a Telefilm) - 1986
- Itibut - 1987
- Haripatra - 1989
- Prthak Isvara - 1991
- Bhagavanara Desa - 1991
- Manushya Swara - 1992
- Swa-nirvachita Sreshtha Galpa - 1994
- Sashthasati - 1996
- Moksha (made into a Feature Film, that received the Best Regional Film award) - 1996 
- Ullaghna (Sahitya Akademi Award,2000) - 1998
- Nivedanam-Idam - 2000
- Gandhinka - 2002
- Jhoti-paka-Kantha - 2006
Awards and recognition
She was awarded
- 1985 - 'Orissa Sahitya Academi Award' for her novel 'Sheelapadma'
- 1990 - 'Sarala Award' for her novel 'Yajnaseni'
- 1991 - 'Moortidevi Award' for her Novel 'Yajnaseni'
- 2000 - 'Sahitya Akademi Award' for her Short-Story Collection 'Ullaghna'
- 2006 - 'Amrita Keerti Puraskar' 
- 2007 - 'Padma Shri Award' in Literature and Education by the Government of India.
- 2011 - 'Jnanpith Award' 
- Gulati, Varun (2009). "Language in India". languageinindia.com. Retrieved 28 December 2012. "an M.A. in Education and Ph.D. in Educational Psychology"
- "Odia writer Pratibha Ray named for Jnanpith Award : East, News - India Today". indiatoday.intoday.in. 2012. Retrieved 28 December 2012. "She was born to a Gandhian teacher on January 21, 1943, at Alabol village."
- Balakrishnan, Hariharan (2007). "The Hindu : Literary Review / Personality : 'The sky is not the limit'". hindu.com. Retrieved 28 December 2012. "first woman to win the Jnanpith Moorti Devi Award."
- "Odisha: Eminent fiction writer Dr Pratibha Ray to receive coveted Jnanpith Award, Oriya Orbit". orissadiary.com. 2012. Retrieved 28 December 2012. "her first novel as a novice, titled “Barsha-Basanta-Baishakha” (The Rain, Spring and Summer, 1974) which immediately captured the hearts of Oriya readers."
- Parida, Saumya (2012). "Odisha: Eminent fiction writer Dr Pratibha Ray to receive coveted Jnanpith Award". indiaeducationdiary.in. Retrieved 28 December 2012. "She took voluntary retirement as a Professor of Education from State Government Service in 1998 and joined as Member, Public Service Commission of Orissa State"
- "Assam gets a taste of governor's literary skills - Times Of India". indiatimes.com. 2012. Retrieved 28 December 2012. "Roy's Sahitya Akademi wining novel ' Sheela Padma'"
- "Oriya writer Pratibha Roy to receive Amrita Keerti Award - Oneindia News". news.oneindia.in. 2006. Retrieved 28 December 2012. "It has been translated into seven languages so far and won for the authoress Bharatiya Jnanpith Trust's Moorti Devi Award and Sarala Award of Orissa in 1990."
- "Pratibha Ray". samanvayindianlanguagesfestival.org. Retrieved 28 December 2012. "Her story “Moksh” has been made into film and won the best film award from President of India."
- "Manorama Online | Odia writer Pratibha Ray selected for Jnanpith award". english.manoramaonline.com. 2012. Retrieved 28 December 2012. "Yjnaseni (1985), which won Jnanpith Trust's Moorti Devi Award in 1991"
- "Prathiba Ray to receive Amrita Keerthi - Amma, Mata Amritanandamayi Devi". amritapuri.org. 2006. Retrieved 28 December 2012. "Smt. Pratibha Ray will be awarded the Ashram’s Amrita Keerti Puraskar for her meritorious contributions to the field of Indian literature."
- "Oriya novelist and academician Pratibha Ray wins 2011 Jnanpith Award". ibnlive.in.com. 2012. Retrieved 28 December 2012. "it was decided that Ray, 69, will be the winner of the 2011 Janapith Award."
- Prof. (Smt.) Pratibha Ray receives Padma Shri award in 2007 for Literature and Education, Orissa