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Ramesh, Alter Books In Kamaladevi Chattopadhyay NIF Prize Longlist

Ramesh, Alter Books In Kamaladevi Chattopadhyay NIF Prize Longlist

Twelve books on a variety of themes ranging from political biographies to reportage, anthropology to history and environmental histories to regional studies by writers like Jairam Ramesh, Stephen Alter and Vikram Sampath among others have made it to the longlist of the 2020 Kamaladevi Chattopadhyay NIF Prize. The longlist was named by a jury headed by Niraja Gopal Jayal and also comprising Ramachandra Guha, Nandan Nilekani, Srinath Raghavan, Nayanjot Lahiri and Manish Sabharwal.

New Delhi: Twelve books on a variety of themes ranging from political biographies to reportage, anthropology to history and environmental histories to regional studies by writers like Jairam Ramesh, Stephen Alter and Vikram Sampath among others have made it to the longlist of the 2020 Kamaladevi Chattopadhyay NIF Prize. The longlist was named by a jury headed by Niraja Gopal Jayal and also comprising Ramachandra Guha, Nandan Nilekani, Srinath Raghavan, Nayanjot Lahiri and Manish Sabharwal.

According to the jury, the books cover a wide array of genres: biographies, investigative reportage, regional histories, environmental studies and are written by scholars, journalists and activists. “It was both exciting and arduous to choose these titles among the over one hundred books submitted for the prize,” it said.

The shortlist will be announced on November 16 and the winner in December. Named after Kamaladevi Chattopadhyay, who had contributed significantly to the freedom struggle, to the women’s movement, to refugee rehabilitation and to the renewal of handicrafts, the prize celebrates non-fiction literature by emerging writers from all nationalities, published in the previous calendar year. Instituted in 2018, the prize carries a cash award of Rs 15 lakh and a citation.

The longlist includes “A Chequered Brilliance: The Many Lives of VK Krishna Menon” by Ramesh; “Wild Himalaya: A Natural History of the Greatest Mountain Range on Earth” by Alter; “Savarkar: Echoes from a Forgotten Past, 1883-1924” by Sampath; “2019: How Modi Won India” by Rajdeep Sardesai; “The Unquiet River: A Biography of the Brahmaputra” by Arupjyoti Saikia; and “Mobilizing the Marginalized: Ethnic Parties without Ethnic Movements” by Amit Ahuja. “Panjab: Journey through Faultlines” by Amandeep Sandhu; “The Great Agrarian Conquest: The Colonial Reshaping of a Rural World” by Neeladri Bhattacharya”; “Bottle of Lies: Ranbaxy and the Dark Side of Indian Pharma” by Katherine Eban; “Animal Intimacies: Beastly Love in the Himalayas by Radhika Govindrajan”; “Kuknalim, Naga Armed Resistance: Testimonies of Leaders, Pastors, Healers and Soldiers” by Nandita Haksar and Sebastian Hongray; and “Midnight’s Machines: A Political History of Technology” in India by Arun Mohan Sukumar complete the list.

Previous winners of the award are Milan Vaishnav (“When Crime Pays: Money and Muscle in Indian Politics”, 2018) and Ornit Shani (“How India Became Democratic”, 2019).

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