Ramakanta Biswas

Eminent litterateur of Odisha and poet of international acclaim, Jayanta Mahapatra passed away on Sunday while undergoing treatment at SCB Medical College and Hospital in Cuttack. He was 95.

As per initial reports, Mahapatra was suffering from pneumonia. 

He was the first Indian poet to win a Sahitya Akademi award for English poetry. He authored poems such as 'Indian Summer' and 'Hunger', which are regarded as classics in modern Indian English literature. 

Mahapatra was conferred the Padma Shri in 2009 for his contribution to literature. However, he returned the award to express a voice of dissent against the “Moral Asymmetry” destroying the fabric of the society. 

Soon after the news about Mahapatra's demise broke, condolences poured in from different quarters. 

BJP National Vice President Baijayant Jay Panda condoled the passing away of Mahapatra and described him as a true literary giant.