Six writers shortlisted for DSC Prize for South Asian literature

Six writers have been shortlisted for the DSC Prize for South Asian Literature 2016.

Published : 27 Nov 2015, 07:23 PM
Updated : 27 Nov 2015, 07:23 PM

The organiser of the event in a statement said the shortlist was announced at the London School of Economics and Political Science on Thursday.

The coveted literary awards carry a prize of $50,000 for the best work in fiction by an author of any ethnicity or nationality, provided the work is about South Asia and its people.

The six shortlisted writers are Akhil Sharma (Family Life, Faber & Faber, UK), Anuradha Roy (Sleeping on Jupiter, Hachette, India), KR Meera (Hang Woman, Penguin, India), Mirza Waheed (The Book of Gold Leaves, Viking/Penguin, India), Neel Mukherjee (The Lives of Others, Vintage/Penguin, UK) and Raj Kamal Jha (She Will Build Him a City, Bloomsbury, India).

They have been shortlisted by an international five-member jury panel comprised of renowned journalist Mark Tully, Emeritus Professor of Literature at the Open University, UK, Dennis Walder, Seattle-based literary coordinator Karen Allman, Senior Professor of English at the University of Colombo Neloufer de Mel and Bangladeshi writer, translator, critic and academic Syed Manzoorul Islam, the statement said.

"We have had to make difficult decisions. Our final list still reflects the variety and vigour of South Asian fiction writing. One of the most striking features of the list is the quality of writing," jury chair Tully said in the statement.

The novels were "remarkable for their realism and for the way they conveyed atmosphere", added Tully, a long-time India hand as the BBC bureau chief.

The statement said another highlight of the prize was that it highly encouraged writing in regional languages and that the prize money was equally shared between the author and the translator in case a translated entry wins.

“This works as a great impetus for regional writers who often struggle to gain visibility on international shores,” it said.

The winner of the award will be announced at the Galle Literary Festival in Sri Lanka, on Jan 16, 2016.