Benyamin wins JCB Prize for literature

Benyamin wins JCB Prize for literature


 Malayalam author Benyamin has won the first edition of the JCB Prize for Literature for his book Jasmine Days.

The award carries Rs 25 lakh and a trophy, created by Delhi-based artist duo Thukral and Tagra.

Shahnaz Habib, who translated Benyamin's book from Malayalam, also won a prize of Rs 5 lakh.

“The courage shown by Benyamin in Jasmine Days in examining some of the most important conflicts of our times is exceptional. The novel provides powerful insights into the violence associated with change. It also raises profound questions about the relationship between crime, punishment and forgiveness. A brilliant and intense novel.” Vivek Shanbhag, chair of the JCB Prize for Literacy judging panel, said.

Benyamin has written close to 20 books across multiple genres—from short stories to novels to memoir.

“Benyamin's writing is deeply moving. He weaves a heartfelt story, while touching upon contemporary themes on immigration, labour, freedom, and human rights. And at the end of it, he will leave you in a better place than where you started," Rohan Murty, Harvard University fellow and founder of the Murty Classical Library of India, said.