Manipuri dance doyen Rajkumar Singhajit Singh has been selected for the Tagore Award for Cultural Harmony for the year 2014. He has distinguished himself both as an outstanding teacher, performer and choreographer.
The Tagore Award for Cultural Harmony for the years 2015 & 2016 is being conferred on the Chhayanaut (a cultural organization of Bangladesh) and on one of India’s greatest sculptors, Ram Vanji Sutar, respectively.
The jury under the Chairmanship of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and comprising the Chief Justice of India Justice Ranjan Gogoi, N Gopalaswami and Dr Vinay Sahasrabuddhe after detailed discussions on October 24, unanimously decided to select Rajkumar Singhajit Singh, Chhayanaut and Ram Vanji Sutar to be the recipients of the Tagore Award for the years 2014, 2015 & 2016 respectively, in recognition of their outstanding contribution to cultural harmony.
Rajkumar’s work over the years bears witness to his creativity within the framework of traditional Manipuri dance. His choreography has been enriched by elements incorporated from various forms of performing arts of Manipur such as Thang-ta, Nata-Sankirtana, Lai-haraoba and Rasleela. The award recognizes his contribution in keeping the tradition of Manipuri dance alive and vibrant, promoting harmony through dance and also pays tribute to Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore, who, deeply influenced by Manipuri dance, made it an integral part of the education curriculum at Visva Bharati.
The annual award was instituted by the government of India during the commemoration of 150th Birth Anniversary of Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore.
The first Tagore Award was conferred on Pt Ravi Shankar, the Indian Sitar Maestro in 2012 and second was conferred on Zubin Mehta in 2013. The award carries an amount of Rs. 1 crore, a citation in a scroll, a plaque as well as an exquisite traditional handicraft and handloom item. The award is open to all persons regardless of nationality, race, language, caste, creed or sex.