Kovilan passes away



Thrissur: Well Known Malayalam novelist, V V Ayyappan, popularly known as Kovilan, passed away at a private hospital here early Wednesday.

He was 87 and leaves behind a son, two daughters.

He was suffering from respiratory problems, family sources said.

Kovilan's 11 novels, 12 short stories, 3 essay collections and a play have been well received in Kerala's literary circles.

Born on July 9, 1923 at Kandanassery in the district, Kovilan, a freedom fighter, joined the Royal Indian Navy in 1943 and was trained in Anti Aubmarine Detecting Operations.

He served in Burma, Myanmar and Singapore. He quit following Navy rebellion in 1946. In 1948, he joined the Corps of Signals in Indian Army as Radio Mechanic.

For five years, he served in the Himalayas and also wrote about his experiences in his novel 'Himalaya'.

He had also served as instructor in the National Cadet Corps, IIT Kanpur and retired in 1968 as Havildar Major, after which he began actively writing in Malayalam.

In 2006, Kovilan was a recipient of Kerala government's highest literary honour 'Ezhuthachan Puraskarom' for his outstanding contribution to Malaylam literature.

He won the Kerala Sahitya Akademi award in 1972 and 1977 and the Kendra Sahitya Akademi award in 1998 besides Vayalar award in 1999. He was also a member of the Kendra Sahitha Akademi.

PTI