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Vijayan: writer, satirist, legend
Shobha Warrier in Chennai | March 30, 2005 15:53 IST
Oottupulackal Velukkutty Vijayan was born in Palakkad on July 2, 1930.
Vijayan spent most of his childhood in police camps, as his father O Velukkuttty was an officer in the Malabar Special Police, which was then a part of the Madras province. His started his formal schooling at 12.
Vijayan lived with his father, mother Kamalakshi Amma and sisters Santha and Usha.
It is said he was a very weak and lonely child. Instead of playing with other children, he spent time observing nature and it was manifested in all his literary works later in life.
Vijayan graduated in Arts from the Government Victoria College in Palakkad and took a Masters degree in English Literature from the Madras Presidency College.
Vijayan started out as an English lecturer at the Malabar Christian College in Calicut and later at the Government Victoria College, Palakkad.
He later joined the Shanker's Weekly in Delhi in 1958 as a cartoonist and a writer of political satire. After five years, he moved to the Patriot as a staff cartoonist. He later worked in The Hindu and The Statesman.
Vijayan married Dr Theresa Gabriel, a faculty in philosophy, in Delhi.
Vijayan had been suffering from Parkinson's disease for the last several years.
He has penned nine collections of short stories, eight books on essays, six novels, a book on satire and another on cartoons.
"Khazakinte Ithihasam" (The Legends of Khazak in English), a legendary masterpiece, brought him national and international fame. He was awarded the Padma Shree in 2001 for contribution to literature.
Vijayan died in Hyderabad on Wednesday following prolonged illness.
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