Kannada poet and short story writer Jayant Kaikini was named the winner of the DSC Prize for South Asian Literature for his translated work "No Presents Please."
Jayant beat internationally-acclaimed writers including Kamila Shamsie and Mohsin Hamid to win the prize and the generous purse of $25,000.
The announcement was made at the Tata Steel Kolkata Literary Meet at the iconic Victoria Memorial Hall in Kolkata. This marks the first time a translated work has won the prestigious prize.
Jayant and translator Tejaswini Niranjana received the award from eminent writer Ruskin Bond. The prize money is being equally split between the author and translator.
'No Presents Please: Mumbai Stories' is a collection of short stories set in Mumbai dating back to the 1980s. It brings together a collection of ordinary characters in the city. The book won the 2017 Atta Galatta-BLF Prize.
The chair of judges praised Jayant's work. "The Mumbai that came across through the pen of Kaikini was the city of ordinary people, who inhabit the bustling metropolis,â€ť said the judges as per The Guardian. â€śIt is a view from the margins and all the more poignant because of it."
Jayant lived in Mumbai for 24 years from 1976. In his acceptance speech, Jayant refused to describe the literary prize as a 'race'. â€śThis is great and heartening because it acknowledges a translation and the short story as a genre. Usually, most acclaim is reserved for the big book, the big novel. I am very happy that the jury has decided to recognise Tejaswini equally,â€ť said Kaikini as per The Indian Express.