Thanks to literary works of Myanmar writers with patriotic spirit, Myanmar has been standing tall with the improvement of literature and culture among global countries despite changing the political system in various eras, says Senior General

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State Administration Council Chairman Prime Minister Senior General Min Aung Hlaing presents 2020 National Lifetime Award for Literary Achievement to Saya Gyi U Maung Maung Latt (Naung) on 4 December 2021.

Myanmar nationals and Myanmar literature bilaterally benefit each other in successive eras, said Chairman of the State Administration Council Prime Minister Senior General Min Aung Hlaing at the awarding ceremony of the National Lifetime Award for Literary Achievement, National Literary Award and Sarpay Beikman Manuscript Award for 2020 at the Myawady Media Centre in Yankin Township of Yangon Region yesterday morning.
First, the Senior General viewed the display of biographies of winners in the National Lifetime Award for Literary Achievement and prize-winning works in the national literary and Sarpay Beikman manuscript awards for 2020, fiction and non-fiction books published in 2020-21.
Speaking on the occasion, the Senior General said that literature is a front part of the culture of a country as well as an important cultural arena in the development of the State and the nation. Myanmar national and Myanmar literature bilaterally benefit each other in successive eras.
Myanmar literature has been about 1,000 years from the 12th century of the Bagan era to today. Myanmar language and literature are the cultural heritage that has been strongly existing in Myanmar history. The Government presents prizes for the national literary awards selected as the best works of literati with the aim of developing the Myanmar literary world.
Good manuscripts of writers which could not be published for various reasons were selected as Sarpay Beikman Manuscript Award through competition and awarded in 13 genres. This year, cash awards for the prizes will be increased for honouring the literati and ensuring sufficiency for scholars with the goodwill of the State Administration Council. The cash award for the National Lifetime Award for Literary Achievement was K5 million in the past, compared with K10 million this year. The National Literary Award winners were presented K2.5 million in the past compared with K3 million. With regard to the Sarpay Beikman Manuscript Award, the first, second and third prizes were awarded K1 million, K700,000 and K500,000 in the past in comparison with K1.5 million, K1 million and K700,000 for first, second and third prizes. I expect all literary personnel may be delighted with it.
The National Literary Award selection committee was formed with 28 experienced literati and the Sarpay Beikman Manuscript Award selection committee with 24 literati. They selected the best works at different levels. This ceremony, a total of 12 of 19 genres for 1,122 books published for the first time in 2020 in the National Literary Award and 27 manuscripts in 13 genres for 259 entries in the Sarpay Beikman Manuscript Contest will be awarded.
It can be seen that artiste organizations such as literary, motion picture, music and theatrical drama emphasized the development of the nation depending on the policies of the government in successive eras. They could stimulate the people to join the mainstream of the nation while preserving the Myanmar traditions and national characters in addition to performing education and entertainment to the people.
On 1 November, the Senior General recounted he met with artistes from literary, film, theatrical and music arenas and presented foodstuffs and K400 million as the fund for them. It showed the goodwill of the State and emphasis to the artistes. It is necessary to turn out the outstanding persons and qualified, capable youths in building the Union based on democracy and federalism. The Senior General stressed the need to raise the reading habits of the new generation youths to be able to develop physical and mental prowess. Only when the youths have high reading habits, will the country have qualified human resources.
It is necessary to improve libraries for raising the reading habit of the people. Relevant ministries are fulfilling the technical needs of libraries for ensuring the people have access to books and for systematically maintaining the libraries in order to give historical evidence, subject-wise and social knowledge to the people.
It was vividly found that doyen literati participated in the development of the nation in history. It is necessary to steer the people to gain good thoughts and correct knowledge, to have morale and moral characters and develop human resources through literature. Hence, literati and writers are urged to participate in the development of the nation with might and main.
Any country and any national especially value the literature and culture. It can be seen that religions, economy and cultures can be exchanged between the countries. Thanks to the literary works of Myanmar writers with patriotic spirit, Myanmar has been standing tall with the improvement of literature and culture among the global countries despite changing the political system in the various eras. The current generation and posterities are responsible for preserving noble traditions. So, doyen literati and literary researchers are urged to hand over the stipulations and creation to new generations with goodwill. Moreover, they have to continuously discover the traditional works, perspectives and culture of Myanmar.
The Senior General presented the National Lifetime Award for Literary Achievement to veteran literati U Maung Maung Latt (Naung), U Sein Hlaing (Thura Zaw) and Daw Cho Cho Tin (Ma Sandar) for 2020, awards to writer Ma Chu Pwint in the novel genre, writer Chit Su Aung in classical poem genre, and writer Naing Zaw in Myanmar culture and fine arts genre through winners and their families.
Then, SAC members Mahn Nyein Maung and Daw Aye Nu Sein presented national literary awards to winners. Union Minister for Information U Maung Maung Ohn, Union Minister for Religious Affairs and Culture U Ko Ko, Union Minister for Science and Technology Dr Myo Thein Kyaw, and Union Minister for Sports and Youth Affairs U Min Thein Zan presented winners in the Sarpay Beikman Manuscript Award.
On behalf of the winners, National Lifetime Award for Literary Achievement awardee Sayagyi U Sein Hlaing (Thura Zaw) expressed thanks to Head of State and officials for increasing the cash award for winning works to the prize winners.
Later, a video clip on the development of Myanmar literature in successive eras and the assistance of the government was presented.
The Senior General posed for documentary photos with awardees.—MNA

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