BSF boss bags NHRC literary award

SILCHAR: For this top BSF official, the pen is truly mightier than the sword. After winning many literary awards, Manohar Lal Batham, DIG of the Border Security Force, has now bagged the prestigious National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) award for his book Astitva Ka Sankat Aur Manvadhikar" (Crisis of Survival and Human Rights).

A committee constituted by the NHRC for awarding outstanding books on human rights written in Hindi, selected Batham's book for the prize which carries a cash award of Rs. 40,000. Batham will receive the award at a function to be organized by the NHRC in New Delhi soon.

Batham, who is now posted at the Mizoram-Cachar frontier at Mashimpur near Silchar, has already received the Pt Govindvallabh Pant Award and the Indira Gandhi Official Language International award for his first book Atankwad Chunoti Aur Sangarsh. Sammonopadhi, another work by Batham, won him the Rashtrabhasha Aacharya award.

Batham, who is also a President Police Medal awardee, has also written books of poetry. One of them, Sarhad Se, has been translated into English, Urdu, Kachhi (Gujarati), Punjabi, Malayali, Bengali and other languages. It is based on the day to day life of an army man.

Born in Bhopal, Batham has been interested in writing right from his childhood. And even after so many years of grueling hard work as a BSF boss, his passion for literature has not dwindled.

"The scenic beauty of the areas near international borders and problems faced by villagers living near the borders are issues that inspire me to write", he said.

The NHRC-awarded book Astitva Ka Sankat Aur Manavadhikar was published in 2008 by Megha Books, New Delhi.

Dignitaries of the literary world and officials of various fields have congratulated Batham on his achievement. The writer has dedicated the award to his friends and colleagues, without whom, he feels, writing the book would not have been possible.