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JCB Prize for Literature

JCB Prize for Literature is a 25-lakh award presented each year to a distinguished work of fiction by an Indian writer and translator if any. It is commonly known as “India’s most valuable literature prize”. The award was instituted by the JCB Literature Foundation, a non-profit organization funded by British earthmoving equipment giant JCB in 2018 to promote Indian literature.

According to JCB Literature Foundation, the Prize aims to celebrate Indian writing, and to help readers across the world discover the very best of contemporary Indian literature.

There is a Literary Director who appoints a jury of experts from various fields of Indian social, art and intellectual arena. This Jury selects a long list of ten and the shortlist of five and then the winner. All authors who were shortlisted will receive Rs 1 lakh each and translators will receive Rs 50000 if any. The final winner receives 2500000 rupees and translator receives 1000000 rupees if any. As per JCB, the Jury are audited by third party auditors from beginning to the end.

JCB Literature Trophy

“Mirror Melting” Trophy is cast in aluminum and coated in highly reflective nickel. It was designed by artist duo Thukral & Tagra in 2018.

Winners and Jury


Winner: Benyamin (Jasmine Days)
Translator: Shahnaz Habib
The Jury: 1) Deepa Mehta, 2) Rohan Murty, 3) Priyamvada Natarajan, 4) Vivek Shanbhag, 5) Arshia Sattar


Winner: Madhuri Vijay (The Far Field)
The Jury: 1) Anjum Hasan, 2) Pradip Krishen, 3) K.R Meera, 4) Parvati Sharma, 5) Arvind Subramanian.

Winner: S.Hareesh (Moustache)
Translator: Jayasree Kalathil
The Jury: 1) Leela Samson, 2) Tejaswini Niranjana, 3) Deepika Sorabjee, 4) Aruni Kashyap, 5) Ramu Ramanathan.

Winner: M.Mukundan (Delhi: A Soliloquy)
Translators: Fathima EV and Nandakumar K
The Jury: 1) Sara Rai, 2) Annapurna Garimella, 3) Shahnaz Habib, 4) Prem Panicker, 5) Amit Varma.


Winner: Khalid Jawed (The Paradise of Food)
Translator: Baran Farooqi
The Jury: 1) AS Panneerselvan, 2) Amitabha Bagchi, 3) Rakhee Balaram, 4) J Devika, 5) Janice Pariat.


Winner: Perumal Murugan (Fire Bird, originally written in Tamil “Aalanda Patchi”) Translator: Janani Kannan The Jury: 1) Srinath Perur, 2) Mahesh Dattani, 3) Somak Ghoshal, 4) Kavery Nambisan, 5) Swati Thiyagarajan.

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