Vancouver, BC (September 10, 2015) – The Dhahan International Punjabi Literature Prize proudly announces the 2015 winners awarded for excellence in the Punjabi literary community. The Dhahan Prize promotes Punjabi literature on a global scale by awarding $25,000 annually to the best book of fiction published in either Gurmukhi or Shahmukhi scripts; two runner-up prizes of $5,000 CDN will also be awarded.
The Dhahan Prize is the largest literary award of its kind celebrating the rich history of Punjabi language and aims to inspire the creation of Punjabi literature across borders, bridging Punjabi communities around the world, and promoting Punjabi literature on a global scale. The awards garner critical acclaim and significant exposure for aspiring writers, setting the stage for its select winners to secure international projects that will also reach broader English audiences.
2015 Winners of the Dhahan Prize in Punjabi Literature are:
- Prize ~ $25,000:
Lota (Novel) by Darshan Singh
- Second Prize ~ $5,000: Gurmukhi script
Mor Udaari (Novel) by Harjeet Atwal
- Second Prize ~ $5,000: Shahmukhi script
Madho Lal Hussain – Lahore Di Vel (Novel) by Nain Sukh
“Darshan Singh’s novel Lota was selected to receive the Dhahan Prize from eligible entries from five countries around the world,” said Barj S. Dhahan, co-founder Canada India Education Society. “This prestigious, international literary award both opens doors for aspiring Punjabi writers and plays an important role in the preservation and expansion of the Punjabi language and its literature.”
The Dhahan Prize was established in Vancouver as Punjabi culture has a rich history in British Columbia, and as the fifth highest spoken language in Canada is also integral to the multicultural fabric of the nation. The prize was founded by Canada India Education Society in partnership with the Department of Asian Studies in the Faculty of Arts at University of British Columbia, and is funded by an endowment from Barj and Rita Dhahan, and family and friends.
Previous winners include: Khali Khoohaan di Katha by Avtar Singh Billing (Gurmukhi script); Ik Raat da Samunder by Jasbir Bhullar (Gurmukhi script); and Kabutar, Banaire te Galian by Zubair Ahmed (Shahmukhi script).
About Gurmukhi & Shahmukhi Scripts:
Gurmukhi Script (ਗੁਰਮੁਖੀ) a version of the Landa alphabet standardised by Guru Angad Dev Ji, the second Sikh guru. Gurmukhi means “from the mouth of the Guru”.
Shahmukhi Script (شاہ مکھی) a version of the Urdu alphabet normally written in Nastaʿlīq style. Shahmukhi means “from the King’s mouth”. By encouraging writers to use Gurmukhi and Shahmukhi scripts, the Punjabi language remains alive in written word.
About the Dhahan Prize for Punjabi Literature:
The Dhahan Prize celebrates the rich culture and transnational heritage of Punjabi language and literature by awarding a yearly prize for excellence in Punjabi fiction. The Prize mission is to inspire the creation of Punjabi literature across borders, bridging Punjabi communities around the world and promoting Punjabi literature on a global scale. The Dhahan Prize is awarded by the Canada India Education Society and begain in partnership with the Department of Asian Studies in the Faculty of Arts at University of British Columbia.
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