Veteran Tamil novelist Balakumaran died today following brief illness, family sources said. The 71 year-old writer died at a private hospital here. Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami and Union Minister Pon Radhakrishnan condoled the death of Balakumaran, who had penned a number of novels and short stories.
A celebrated novelist, Balakumaran forayed into Tamil literature by starting off with poetry but focused on prose later, only to become one of the prominent writers in the language. The late author was famous for his novels like 'Mercury Pookal' and 'Irumbu Kuthiraigal' which earned him a good fan following.
Balakumaran also published a number of short stories and later entered Tamil cinema through script and dialogue writing. He had worked with top two stars Rajinkanth (film "Baasha") and Kamal Haasan ("Nayagan" and "Guna").
Balakumaran was a recipient of a number of awards, including the state government's 'Kalaimamani' honour. In his condolence message, Palaniswami hailed the writer's rich contribution to Tamil literature by way of "hundreds of short stories, over 200 novels" and many poems.
In a statement, Palaniswami recalled that he had presented a state government award to the writer in January this year.
"The passing away of the affable Balakumaran is a big loss for the Tamil literary world," he said, extending his condolences to the family of the deceased. Radhakrishnan and many others condoled the demise of Balakumaran
(With PTI Inputs)