THT Prof S Swaminathan Award Lecture. Dr G Sankaranarayanan "வரலாற்றுப் போக்கில் சைவம்" Sep 4, 2021

Dr G Sankaranarayanan is the Winner of the THT-Prof S Swaminathan Heritage Award for 2021. In his Award Lecture he will take stock of the origins and development of Saivism as well as its different cults over the centuries. About the Speaker Dr. G. Sankaranarayanan is a Professor of Sahitya at the National Sanskrit University in Tirupati. He completed his undergraduate and postgraduate education in Sanskrit, with Gold Medals in both levels. A multilingual scholar, Dr. G. Sankaranarayanan has published a 1200-page compilation of Chola copper plate inscriptions for the Thanjavur Tamil University. One of the editors of 'Bharata Vani', a collection of moral sayings from the Mahabharata, he has also translated it into English, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam and Kannada. Besides having edited a multilingual dictionary in Sanskrit and 12 Indian languages, he is also the editor of the Sanskrit journal 'Samskritasri'. He has helped read and publish several rare palm leaf manuscripts besides discovering and publishing ten new lithic inscriptions. A prolific speaker on Sanskrit Literature, Temple Architecture, Epigraphy, Iconography and Manuscriptology, he has also composed several slokas in Sanskrit. Dr. G. Sankaranarayanan is also an exponent of Bharatanatyam, having learnt the dance form from Padmashri Dr. Chitra Visweswaran. Please subscribe to this channel and click on the Bell Icon to receive notifications on future events.

The Tamil Heritage Trust - Prof. S. Swaminathan Heritage Award 2021 awarded to Dr. G Sankaranarayanan

Press Release 


“The Tamil Heritage Trust - Prof. S. Swaminathan Heritage Award 2021 awarded to Dr. G Sankaranarayanan” 


Monday, August 9th, 2021.



The city-based Tamil Heritage Trust (THT) has announced Dr. G. Sankaranarayanan as the recipient of the second, annual THT - Prof. S. Swaminathan Heritage Award. 


The Award was instituted by THT in 2020 to honour the work of individuals under the age of fifty who have made significant contributions to deepening the general public’s knowledge of Indian heritage, widening the audience for heritage appreciation, and in the process strengthening our existing knowledge base of heritage assets and resources. 


The award is named for Prof S. Swaminathan, retired Professor from IIT-Delhi and co-founder of the Tamil Heritage Trust, whose books, monographs and talks on many facets of India’s heritage continue to be a source of inspiration for heritage enthusiasts. Just in its second year, the award has garnered the interest of several noteworthy individuals in the field of history and heritage studies. The winner this year was chosen from a pool of more than twenty nominations drawn from across the country by a distinguished 6-member jury comprising historians, scholars and public intellectuals. 


Accepting the Award, Dr. G. Sankaranarayanan, an Assistant Professor of Sanskrit at the National Sanskrit University, Tirupati, said, “I am greatly humbled by this recognition bestowed on me by the Tamil Heritage Trust. I believe that the pursuit of knowledge and scholarship in any field enriches society when it is shared as widely and freely as possible. THT has been a dedicated and trustworthy bridge between academia and the general public in the field of history and heritage. It is my pleasure to accept this award and along with it the responsibility of continuing my work as a heritage researcher and communicator." 


Prof. S Swaminathan, Co-founder and Trustee of THT, said, “Dr. G. Sankaranarayanan is a young and committed educator with an abiding passion to speak to audiences, large and small, and illuminate their minds on the beauty, sophistication and grandeur of Indian temples, literature, art and culture. A scholar in multiple Indian languages, he is emerging as an important and respected voice in the field. It is the responsibility of organizations such as ours to connect individuals like Sankaranarayanan to global platforms and intellectuals, and facilitate mutually rewarding collaborations and research projects.”


THT was founded as a non-profit Trust in the year 2010 with a vision to put the common man in touch with the rich storehouse of knowledge that is Indian heritage. The Trust which is entirely volunteer-driven attempts to deliver this through several initiatives - monthly public talks, annual thematic conferences, site seminars and study tours to places of historical interest, workshops on temple architecture and museum collections and an outreach effort through schools to sensitize young students to Indian heritage. 


The award which carries a citation and a cash prize of Rs 25,000 will be presented to Dr. G. Sankaranarayanan at a ceremony to be held later this month. The winner is scheduled to deliver the Award Lecture on a topic of his choice on the 4th of September, 2021.  


For more information, please contact: 

Badri Seshadri – 98840 66566 

Siva Thiagarajan – 98842 94494

Evolution of Iconography in Maharashtra. Dr Kumud Kanitkar. THT Monthly Heritage Talk. Aug 7, 2021

"Evolution of Iconography in Maharashtra, 5th to 12th century” In her illustrated talk, Dr Kanitkar will take us through the history of religious thought in different eras and regions of Maharashtra. She will showcase sculptures which are not commonly seen - beginning with fifth century Vakatakas in Ramtek (Vidarbha region), loose sculptures from Elephanta, Sopara, Coastal Konkan, and a few chosen images from structural temples like Markandi, Ambarnath, Aundha, Anwa and Bhuleshvara. Along with social history, she will provide the audience an opportunity to appreciate the art, the different styles and outstanding skills of the unknown artists who created these masterpieces. Dr Kumud Kanitkar is an independent researcher in Indology. Her research focuses on medieval temples in Maharashtra. Her work looks beyond the aesthetic quality of sculptural art, trying to understand the meaning conveyed through the sculptural scheme in an individual temple. Her 2013 book, “Ambarnath Shivalaya : A monograph on the temple of Siva at Ambarnath”, was awarded “Ikuo Hirayama” prize-2013 by The Institut de France, Academie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres, Paris. This was followed by a book in Marathi in 2014, ‘अंबरनाथ शिवालय: प्रबंधिका, अंबरनाथ येथील शिवमंदिर. Her latest, a bilingual book on the Bhuleshvar Temple near Yavat in Maharashtra “Bhuleshvara Shivalaya”, was released in Octber 2020.
She has published numerous articles in research journals, presented papers at seminars and delivered lectures on subjects such as: “Temples in Maharashtra”, “Temple art as a means of non-verbal mass communication”, “Medieval Temple Sculptures as Markers of Social History”. Dr Kanitkar holds a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She was a post-doctoral research fellow at the University of Illinois, at Chicago. She retired as Professor of Chemistry in 2004. She has a wide range of interests – she is a numismatist and a prize-winning philatelist as well.