Published: Wed, May 16, 2018
Life&Culture | By Sue Mclaughlin

Chennai: Tamil novelist Balakumaran dies at 71

Chennai: Tamil novelist Balakumaran dies at 71

Veteran Tamil novelist Balakumaran died on Tuesday following brief illness, family sources said.

Balakumaran started his literary career writing poetry, but focused on prose later. He was 71 years old.

The writer had penned scripts for over 20 Tamil films including blockbusters like Nayakan, Gentleman, Guna, and Baasha.

These dialogues became a part of Tamil popular culture and the actors like Kollywood giants Kamal Haasan and Rajinikanth mouthed them to fame. In 2016, he told The Hindu that he only worked in the film industry for the money.

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Some of his famous, award-winning works include Irumbhu Kudhiraigal, Mercury Pookal, Kadarpalam, Sugajeevanam among others. Irumbu Kudirai won the Rajah Sir Annamalai Chettiar Award and Mercury Pookkal won the Ilakkiya Chinthanai award.

In his condolence message, Mr. Palaniswami hailed the writer's rich contribution to Tamil literature by way of "hundreds of short stories, over 200 novels" and many poems.

Balakumaran penned screenplay and dialogues for several films beginning from Nayagan till Dhanush starrer Pudhupettai.

A recipient of several honours and accolades, Balakumaran was conferred with Kalaimamani award by the Tamilnadu government for his literary work. He was diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease in 2012 and underwent two coronary bypass operations.

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