Lahore writer Nain Sukh wins Dhahan Award for best Punjabi fiction

Lahore-based writer Nain Sukh won the eighth annual Dhahan Award for Best Punjabi Fiction for his short story Jogi, Sap, Trah (Fear of the Snake Charmer), written in the Shahmukhi script.

“This is a unique book about the ‘real’ or ‘original’ inhabitants of the Punjab. A literary milestone in Punjabi… A brilliant, non-religious celebration of Punjabi’s heritage and rich cultural traditions, ”the jury said in a statement in Vancouver Thursday.

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The Dhahan Prize promotes Punjabi literature globally by providing $ 25,000 (in Canadian dollars or ??15.17 lakh), each year for the best fiction book published in Gurmukhi or Shahmukhi scripts, as well as two finalist prizes of $ 10,000 ( ??6.06 lakh).

The 2021 finalists for the Dhahan Prize for Punjabi Literature are Apne Apne Marseia (Voyages), short stories by Amritsar Sarghi-based writer and Mitti Bol Peye (The Earth Speaks), a novel by Delhi-based Balbir Madhopuri. Both books are in the Gurmukhi script.

Hopeful stories of people in fast-paced relationships

“These award-winning books explore the issues of global importance of inequality, discrimination, patriarchy and the struggle of the oppressed for freedom and equal rights. These are hopeful tales of people finding their own unique voice as they journey through rapidly changing relationships, ”said Barj S Dhahan, who funds the award, in a statement from Vancouver.

The Dhahan Prize aims to inspire the creation of Punjabi literature beyond borders, to bring together communities around the world and to promote Punjabi literature globally. The awards are critically acclaimed and a major exhibition for both aspiring and established writers.

Punjabi, third most spoken language in Canada

The Dhahan Prize was established in Vancouver, British Columbia, where the Punjabi people, language and culture have flourished for over a century.

Punjabi is now the third most spoken language in Canada and is a common thread in the multicultural fabric of the nation.

The award is funded by Barj and Rita Dhahan, as well as their family and friends.

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