Six novels shortlisted for Shakti Bhatt prize


New Delhi: Author Deepti Kapoor’s “A Bad Character”, Shovon Chowdhury’s “The Competent Authority”, and Mahesh Rao’s “The Smoke is Rising” are among six books shortlisted for the 2014 Shakti Bhatt First Book Prize, the organisers said Sunday.

The award is named after journalist Shakti Bhatt, who passed away in 2007. The winners will be announced in November and will get a cash award of Rs.2,00,000.

The trophy for the seventh Shakti Bhatt Prize will be presented at a ceremony in Delhi in December.

Making it to the list is Supriya David’s “A Cool, Dark Place”, “The Vanishing Act” by Nepali author Prawin Adhikari, and Pakistan-based author Bilal Tanweer’s “The Scatter Here Is Too Great”.

This brings together an assortment of writers who have written about the changing dynamics of the society.

“Three books have came from metropolitan India, one from a smaller Indian city, one from urban Pakistan and one from rural Nepal,” a statement said.

“A Bad Character” and “A Cool, Dark place” revolve around growing up in circumstances and environments that are idiosyncratic, and often fraught with danger, whereas “The Vanishing Act” and “The Scatter Here Is Too Great” bring political concerns and socio-economic realities.

“The Smoke is Rising” aims its lens at extremely local politics and “The Competent Authority” is a sharp satire set in an alarmingly recognisable future.

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