Ottaplavil Neelakandan Velu Kurup or simply ONV is the 2007 Jnanpith Award winner. He received the Padmashri Award from the Government of India in 1998. ONV is 5th Malyalee & second Malyalee poet to get the Jnanpith Award. The other three Jnanpith award winners from Kerala are S.K. Pottekad (1980), Thakazhi Siva Sankara Pillai (1984) and M.T. Vasudevan Nair (1995). He writes songs for Malayali Films as well as in 1989, he won the national award for best lyricist for the film "Vaishali". He has also won 13 state film awards for best lyricist. His first published poem was "Munnottu" (Forward) which appeared in a local weekly.
Jnanpith Awards are India’s highest literary awards and they are presented by the Bharatiya Jnanpith, a trust founded by publishers of The Times of India newspaper. The award carries a check for Rs. 700,000, a citation plaque and a bronze replica of Saraswati, the Hindu goddess of knowledge, music, and the arts. It was initiated in 1965 and the first winner G. Sankara Kurup was also a Malyalee who won this award for Odakkuzhal (The bamboo flute, 1950).