Shehab Ganem Image Credit: Abdul Rahman/Gulf News Archives

Abu Dhabi: Emirati poet Dr Shihab Ganem has won the Tagore Peace Prize, becoming the first Arab figure to receive such an honour.

Ganem was awarded the prize for his achievements in the field of poetry and its translation, as well as his contribution to developing human understanding that are in compliance with the values of humanity, love and peace adopted and called for by Tagore.

Ganem is a leading poet of the UAE and foremost translator of Indian poetry in Arabic.

The award ceremony will take place in Kolkata, India, on May 6, 2013. The honour is awarded to a single person every two years.

Ganem obtained a double degree in mechanical and electrical engineering from Aberdeen University in Scotland in 1963. He completed his masters degree in water resources engineering in Roorkee University in India. Ganem has 10 collections of translated contemporary Arabic poems translated into English, as well as 10 collections of foreign poetry translated into Arabic. He has published a total of 50 books, one of which is Industrialization in the United Arab Emirates published in the Avebury Series, UK in 1992, and is used as a main reference on the subject.

The Tagore Award was instituted by the Indian government to commemorate the 150th birth anniversary of Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore, for promoting values of universal brotherhood.