Guwahati:  Sahitya Akademi Award recipient and noted Assamese writer Saurav Kumar Chaliha died here on Saturday after a protracted illness, his family sources said.

Chaliha (81) was put on ventilator on Friday night. The reclusive publicity-shy writer wrote under his pen-name Saurav Kumar Chaliha and his real name was Surendra Nath Medhi.

His innovative style and cosmopolitan outlook ushered in modernity in Assamese short story writing with his 'Ashanta Electron' in 1962.

He was conferred the Sahitya Akademi Award in 1974 for his collection of short story `Golam' followed by the prestigious ‘Assam Valley Literary Award’ in 1995.

The anthologies of his stories are 'Duporiya', 'Ehat Daba', 'Golpo Nohoi', 'Aji Sukrobar', 'Abarudha Sahar', 'Bhal Khobor', 'Kabi', 'Ekoish Sotika Dhemali Nohoi', 'Janmadin', 'Jonbiri', 'Dron aru Goethe', 'Nabajanma' and 'Marudyan', besides 'Golam' and 'Ashanta Electron'.

Many of his stories had also been translated into English, Bengali, Hindi, Telegu and Malayalam.

Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi in his condolence message described Chaliha's death as an irreparable loss to the literary world of Assam.