Ram Karan Sharma Award

Lifetime Appreciation Award for Dr. Ram Karan Sharma

Campaign link: https://gofundme.com/rksharma

Former students of Dr. Ram Karan Sharma are arranging a Lifetime Appreciation Award for him that will include a monetary gift.

Many of us know Dr. Sharma as an erudite scholar of Sanskrit culture, as a generous teacher, and as a gracious human being.

We hope that if you have benefited from Dr. and Mrs. Sharma's presence in the past, you will contribute to this GoFundMe campaign for him.

As you may know, Professor Sharma's legendary energy has diminished significantly, and he is no longer able to travel. Mrs. Sharma, at the tender age of 86, continues to function at a very high level in their home in Delhi, India.

Professor Sharma's modesty and cheerfulness often mask the practical challenges that face him and his family. He never asks for anything for himself. Since he will not ask, we must offer.

Therefore, we encourage you to pledge an amount appropriate to your circumstances. All those who contribute can make their names public or private as they prefer.

Thank you in advance for caring about Dr. Shama and Annapoorna at this stage of their life.


Who are the Award Organizers? What is their relationship to the Sharmas? Where are they from?

This award is organized by Devel Patel and Les Morgan, two of Dr. Sharma's long-time collaborators. Prof. Patel teaches in the Department of South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania, and sponsored Dr. Sharma as a visiting professor at that institution for several years. Les Morgan is the author of several books on Sanskrit subjects, including a textbook on Sanskrit metrics for which Dr. Sharma was a consulting editor. Mr. Morgan edited Dr. Sharma's translation of the Bhagavadgita . Mr. Morgan lives in California, working with Dr. Sharma there.

Les Morgan and Deven Patel at the 2011 World Sanskrit Conference in Delhi, India.

How will the funds be used?

The funds will be given directly as a gift to Ram Karan Sharma and Annapoorna Sharma, who may use the funds in any way they see fit. A biography of Dr. Sharma and photos of him with Annapoorna appear below.

How will the funds be presented to Dr. Sharma?

The funds will be transferred directly from this campaign to Dr. Sharma's bank account in the United States. The Sharmas' home is in Delhi, India, but they also maintain a banking relationship in the United States. Beginning in April, 2018, the GoFundme campaign will disburse the entire balance of the fund directly to the Sharmas on a daily basis. We will provide Dr. Sharma with a complete list of all donors so he will see his many friends represented.

In addition to the funds transfer, Deven Patel will personally present Dr. Sharma with a plaque in India in late 2018 or early 2019. We are planning on discussing the award at the upcoming meeting of the International Association of Sanskrit Studies (IASS) in Vancouver, July 9-13, 2018. Dr. Sharma was a founder of the IASS, and this will be the first of their world conferences that he will not be able to attend. 

Will the campaign stop when it reaches its initial goal?

No.  As of April, 2018, the campaign has already reached its initial goal.  The campaign will continue to accept donations for Dr. Sharma's benefit for some time to allow more of his students to participate in this gift effort. Any outstanding balance on the fund will be automatically transferred to Dr. Sharma's bank account in the United States on a daily basis.

Are donations to this fund tax-deductible?

No, they should be considered as personal gifts. For more information on donations see GoFundme's information on tax issues .

Who is Ram Karan Sharma?
For additional information see Ram Karan Sharma's bio on Wikipedia  .

Dr. Ram Karan Sharma is an esteemed Sanskrit scholar and poet. As a Fulbright scholar he received his Ph.D. in Sanskrit from the University of California where he worked with Professor M. B. Emeneau. He has served as President of the International Association of Sanskrit Studies. He has published more than one hundred papers and numerous books, including Elements of Poetry in the Mahābhārata, a systematic analysis of similes, metaphors, and figures of speech in the context of oral poetry. He was the translator for the seven-volume edition of the Caraka Saṁhitā. His Śivasahasranāmāṣṭakam is a study of eight versions of the Śiva Sahasranāma as found in the Mahābhārata and Purāṇas. He has been a fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society (London) and Member of the American Oriental Society. His own work as a poet is the subject of a book by Dr. S. Ranganath entitled Poetry of Dr. Ram Karan Sharma.

An international educator, his positions in India include:

·  1[phone redacted], Special Officer (Sanskrit), Government of India

·  1[phone redacted] and 1[phone redacted], Founder Director, Rastriya Sanskrit Sansthan

·  1[phone redacted], Vice-Chancellor of Kameshwar Singh Darbhanga Sanskrit University, Darbhanga

·  1[phone redacted], Joint Educational Advisor, Government of India

·  1[phone redacted], Vice-Chancellor, Sampurnananda Sanskrit University, Varanasi

In the United States he has held visiting professorships at Columbia University, the University of Chicago, the University of California, and the University of Pennsylvania.

For his contributions to Sanskrit literature he has received many awards including the Sahitya Akademi Award in 1989, the Bharatiya Bhasha Parishad Award in 1989, the Delhi Sanskrit Academy Award, and one of India's most prestigious awards, the Presidential Award. He received the 2005 Krishna Kanta Handique Memorial Award, presented in 2006 by the Honorable Prime Minister of India, Dr. Manmohan Singh. Dr. Sharma is the second person to receive this high honor, given in recognition of his contributions to promote the cause of Sanskrit language and literature.

Ram Karan and Annapoorna Sharma

oṁ ॥

sarve bhavantu sukhinaḥ (may all be happy)

sarve santu nirāmayāḥ (may all be free from illness) ।

sarve bhadrāṇi paśyantu (may all see auspicious things)

mā kaścid duḥkhabhāg bhavet (may no one suffer) ॥

oṁ śānti śānti śānti oṁ (oṁ peace peace peace oṁ) ॥

ॐ सर्वे भवन्तु सुखिनः

सर्वे सन्तु निरामयाः ।

सर्वे भद्राणि पश्यन्तु

मा कश्चिद्दुःखभाग्भवेत् ॥

ॐ शान्तिः शान्तिः शान्तिः ॐ ॥


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Organizer and beneficiary

Les Morgan 
San Francisco, CA
Ram Karan Sharma 
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