The Ramon Magsaysay awardee passed away in July 2016 following age-related illness. She was honoured with the Jnanpith Award in 1996. Counted among South Asia's most decorated authors, Mahasweta Devi was also bestowed with Padmashri, Padma Vibhushan and Sahitya Akademi award.
The writer-activist was known for a lifetime of dedicated work for welfare of tribals in different parts of India. She raised her voice against forcible land acquisition in Singur and Nandigram.
"My India," she once said, "still lives behind a curtain of darkness". Her famous works like 'Hajar Churashir Ma' (Mother of 1084), 'Aranyer Adhikar' (Right to the Forest, 'Jhansir Rani' (The Queen of Jhansi), 'Agnigarbha' (The Fire Within), 'Rudali', 'Sidhu Kanhur Daakey', gave an insight into the oppressed lives.
Mahasweta Devi also focused on women's rights in her works. Her short story 'Choli Ke Peeche' inspired Italian director Italo Spinelli to make the multilingual 'Gangor'.
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