Selected Speeches on Prakrit and Jainology ► Professor Dr. Nalini Balbir, Paris, France

Posted: 24.06.2012

Prof. Dr. Nalini Balbir, born in 1955 in France, is serving as Professor in the University of France since 1988. Her field of researches is so vast that it includes many areas of languages and different genres. Equally at ease in Greek, Latin, Pali, Prakrit, Sanskrit, French, German, Hindi and Gujarati, she has an added advantage of examining the source material. She is a rare blend of a linguist, researcher and a critic of ancient literature of East and West. Luckily, soon she came in close contact with erudite scholars in the field of her academic interest. Dr. Naliniji's hunger for Indological studies made her visit India frequently. Able and timely guidance of Professors Mme. Colette Caillat, C.B. Tripathi, Klaus Bruhn, H.C. Bhayani, D.D. Malvania, Muni Jambuvijayaji and others inspired and sharpened her resolve to explore salient features of Jaina literature. The critical edition and annotated translation in French of the Dānaśhataka-katha in Sanskrit, for which PhD was awarded, strengthened her desire to focus on narrative literature. As a consequence she preferred the Avasyaka literature for her habilitation and befittingly awarded DLitt in 1986.

With more thrust on narrative literature, today Prof. Nalini Balbir is one of the internationally acknowledged major contributor in the field. Though she has written about 80 articles on many allied discipline, papers on stories are more and singular for comparative study. However, the crowning glory of Nalini Balbir’s erudition and dedication to Jainology gets crystallized in the three unique Volumes of the Catalogue of the Jaina Manuscripts of the British Library (2006), consisting of 1278 pages and 1425 entries shedding light on 1083 Manuscripts. She took up the half-done work, and with scholarly couple of Kalpana and Kanhailal, made C.B. Tripathi's dream come true.

The Bahubali Prakrit Vidyapeeth and the National Institute of Prakrit Studies, Shravanabelagola take pleasure and pride to award its prestigious Prakrit Jnanabharati International Award of the Year 2008 to Professor Nalini Balbir, in the Holy presence of His Holiness Jagadguru Karmayogi Swastishri Charukeerthy Bhattaraka Pattacharya Mahaswamiji. This is in recognition of her matchless service and contribution to the promotion of Prakrit language and literature.

We wish Prof. Naliniji good health and happiness to successfully complete not only the two more projects on hand but also many more projects, and to serve the Prakrit literature for many more years. Svasti.

14 October 2010
Karnataka, India

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