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 Kalki Krishnamurthy

A commemorative postage stamp on the Birth Centenary of R. Krishnamoorthy Kalkia Tamil novelist :

கல்கி கிருஷ்ணமூர்த்தி : பொன்னியின் செல்வன்அலை ஓசை (Alai Osai : Wave Sound)Issued by India

Issued on Sep 9, 1999

Issued for : The Department of Post is happy to release a postage stamp of Kalki Krishnamurthy to mark his birth centenary.

Design : Stamp and first day cover design depict the author against the background of visualizations from his works, “Ponniyin Selvan” (stamp) and “Alai Osai” (FDC) which won sahitya academy award.

Credits :
& FDC : Based on material supplied by the sponsors.
Cancellation : Alka Sharma

Type : Stamp, Mint Condition

Colour : Single Colour

Denomination : 300 Paise

Overall size : 3.34 x 2.88 cms.

Printing size : 2.99 x 2.53 cms.

Perforation : 13 x 13

Paper : Imported unwatermarked Adhesive Gravure Coated Stamp Paper in Sheets 50.8 x 53.5 cms.

Stamps Printed : 0.4 Million

Number per issue sheet : 42

Printing Process : Photogravure

Printer : India Security Press, Nashik

Name : Ramaswamy Aiyer Krishnamurthy

Born on Sep 9, 1899 at Manalmedu, Nagapattinam, Tamil Nadu, India

Died on Dec 5, 1954 at Chennai, India

About him: 

  • In the annals of 20th century Tamil literature and journalism, the name of Kalki R. Krishnamurthy (1899-1954) occupies a special place. In a short life of 55 years, he produced a prodigious output of novels, short stories, music and dance critiques, patriotic and reformist writings, travelogue and poems, all marked by nobility of intent, simplicity of language and genuine, unabashed humour.
  • Born in poverty in a village of Tamil Nadu, Krishnamurthy had his schooling in Tiruchirapalli. A brilliant academic career as a student of National College School was cut short when he boycotted school and courted imprisonment during the Non-Cooperation Movement. Jailed for making ‘seditious speeches’ in 1922, he served two more prison sentences as a satyagrahi in 1930 and 1941.
  • In 1941 Krishnamurthy founded the magazine Kalki, serving as its editor till he passed away in 1954. Kalki used his writing talent to great effect in his crusades for several causes. The broad and electric sweep of his canvas covered a variety of concerns and issues. The Freedom Struggle, in which he played an active part as a loyal follower of Gandhiji and Rajaji, the fight against social evils like child marriage, untouchability and alcohol, the promotion of Tamil in literature and classical music, the revival and restoration of pride in Indian art, culture, dance and music, all these received his constant attention. He translated Gandhiji’s autobiography into Tamil.
  • Kalki was the first writer of Tamil prose to take it to the masses. He evolved a lucid, simple style of writing at a time when it was considered fashionable to write in a scholarly, academic, unreadable manner. His modern classics have been translated into several Indian languages, besides English, German and Russian. Kalki was posthumously awarded the Sahitya Akademi award for his inspiring novel based on the Freedom Movement, Alai Osai, but it was through his stirring historic romances, Parthiban Kanavu, Sivakamiyin Sapatam and Ponniyin Selvan that he captured the hearts and imagination of millions of Tamil readers who eagerly awaited the weekly arrival of the magazine Kalki.
  • Text: Based on material supplied by the sponsors.
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