A.N.D. Haksar is a highly respected translator of Sanskrit classics who also worked extensively in the Indian Foreign Service. He has previously served as Minister, High Commissioner and Ambassador respectively in USA, Kenya, Portugal and Yugoslavia, and earlier at the Indian mission to the U.N. at New York.
After retirement he undertook translation from Sanskrit to revive a long-held affinity with a language he had once studied as a schoolboy. His first translations were of tales from the Panchatantra, published by National Book Trust India in 1992. After their success in multiple editions, he continued with several other Sanskrit texts, many of which have been published as Penguin Classics. These included the works of luminaries from the Sanskrit canon such as Kalidasa, Bhasa, Vatsyayana, Bhartrihari and Dandin. But over time he turned his attention to bring to light lesser-known but thoroughly significant Sanskrit works. These included works by medieval authors that reflected cultural intermingling, like the satires of Kshemendra and Srivara’s Kathakautukam (from Kashmir), and Kalyana Malla’s Suleiman Charitra (from Uttar Pradesh), among many others.
Mr Haksar’s elegant translation of Damodara Misra’s Hanumannataka (Hanuman’s Drama), a poignant 11th-century retelling of the story of Rama, is represented by A Suitable Agency and will be published in 2023 as a Penguin Classic.