Born in Thanjavur District, J.M. Sali, an international figure in the Tamil literary world, has been awarded the ‘Cultural Medallion 2012’ of the National Arts Council, Singapore. President Tony Tan Keng Yam presented the award at a brief function held at the President’s residence recently.
The Cultural Medallion was instituted in 1979, to recognise individuals who have attained artistic excellence and have contributed to Singapore’s arts and culture.
Sali is a multifaceted personality having excelled for decades as a novelist, print journalist, broadcast journalist, radio and TV playwright, magazine editor, poet and translator. Sali wrote his first short story for a magazine named Kannan published from Chennai, when he was still in school. (1955).
He served as the assistant editor for the Singapore-based Tamil language broadsheet, Tamil Murasu, from 1964 to 1971. In 1971, he served in the same position for a popular Tamil weekly Ananda Vikatan. From 1983 to 2000, Sali worked as a Senior Broadcast Journalist with the Singapore Broadcasting Corporation (later the Television Corporation of Singapore).