You are here: Home » News-IANS » Art-Culture-Books
Business Standard

Cyrus Mistry wins DSC Prize for South Asian Literature

IANS  |  Jaipur 

Cyrus Mistry won the DSC Prize for South Asian Literature for his novel "Chronicle of a Corpse Bearer", here Saturday at the ongoing Jaipur Literature Festival.

His novel deals with the less-known life of corpse bearers, a microscopic community within the Parsi clan. Their job is to cleanse the body of a deceased and prepare it for the final journey.

"I am overwhelmed and feel happy to receive it," the recluse author told the audience after his name was announced.

The author, 45, took home $50,000 in prize money. He is second Indian after Jeet Thayal to win the award, running in its fourth year.

All six books shortlisted for the prize revolved around the themes of conflict, violence and isolation. The other five nominated were: Mohsin Hamid's "How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia", Sri Lankan Nayomi Munaweera's "Island of a Thousand Mirrors", Nadeem Aslam's "The Blind Man's Garden" and two translations - "Book of Destruction" by Anand and Benyamin's "Goat Days".

"I have hoped to raise large questions that have universal presence through my work," Mistry said.

A jury consisting of editor-writer Antara Dev Sen, translator-writer Ameena Saiyid, British journalist Rosie Boycott and Paul Yamazaki, a veteran bookseller in the US, shortlisted the six books from a long list of 15.

According to Sen, it was not an easy task to make the shortlist.

"All these books have one thing in common: violence. But there are many extraordinary stories, a sense of history and great storytelling in all these shortlisted books," said Sen.

Canadian author John Ralston Saul who was the chief guest pointed out how there was a sense of regionalism in this coveted prize, yet it was open to authors from all countries.

"You have fought your way through," Saul told Surina Narula, founder of the prize.

"By putting an emphasis on translations, you people have stressed the need to have more translations," he said.

"People have been wondering about what will happen to the future of novels as there have been so many novelists, but it indeed is a pleasure to see many people writing good fiction that it is making non-fiction writers jealous," he added.

(Shilpa Raina can be contacted at

Dear Reader,

Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.
We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

First Published: Sat, January 18 2014. 20:54 IST