Srinagar: Renowned poet and Kashmir’s first Jnanpith awardee Professor Rehman Rahi died here on Monday.
He was 98.
“Rahi breathed his last in the early hours at his residence in the Nowshera area of the city,” an official said.
Born on May 6, 1925, Rahi wrote several collections of poems and translated the works of some of the celebrated poets in other languages into Kashmiri.
He received the highest literary award of the country — Jnanpith award — in 2007 for his collection ‘Siyah Rood Jaeren Manz’ (In Black Drizzle). He was also conferred the Padma Shri award in 2000 for his works.
Rahi received the Sahitya Akademi Award for his collection of poems ‘Nawroz-i-Saba’ in 1961.
He translated the works of Baba Farid into Kashmiri, while Dina Nath Naadim’s influence was apparent in his early works.
Rahi’s demise was widely condoled in Kashmir with Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha terming his his death as “end of an era”.
“Deeply saddened to learn of the passing away of Jnanpith awardee Prof Rehman Rahi, one of the most influential poets in Kashmiri in recent times. His passing marks the end of an era. My sincere condolences to his family, friends and well-wishers,” Sinha said in a tweet.
Former chief minister and PDP president Mehbooba Mufti aslo condoled Rahi’s death.
“Saddened to hear about the sad demise of towering literary personality and Gyanpeeth Awardee Jinab Rehman Rahi sb. In his death, Kashmiri Literature and society has been left with a void that can never be filled. My condolences to the family,” she tweeted.
“Rehman Rahi was one of the most outstanding figures in Kashmiri literature. His creative brilliance found expression in various genres of literature. His works reflect cultural and political vicissitudes of Kashmir. They’ll continue to influence young bards and writers. Deep condolences,” tweeted CPI(M) leader M Y Tarigami.