The longlist for the third edition of the Kamaladevi Chattopadhyay NIF Book Prize 2020 for the best non-fiction book on modern India was announced today. The award, started in 2018, recognises exceptional non-fiction books on modern/contemporary India and carries a cash prize of Rs 15 lakh.
Judged by a panel comprising Ramachandra Guha, Srinath Raghavan, Niraja Gopal Jayal, Nayanjot Lahiri, Nandan Nilekani and Manish Sabharwal, this year’s longlist includes Mobilising the Marginalised: Ethnic Parties without Ethnic Movements by Amit Ahuja (Oxford University Press); Panjab: Journey through Faultlines by Amandeep Sandhu (Westland); Wild Himalaya: A Natural History of the Greatest Mountain Range on by Earth by Stephen Alter (Aleph); The Great Agrarian Conquest: The Colonial Reshaping of a Rural World by Neeladri Bhattacharya (Permanent Black/State University of New York Press); Bottle of Lies: Ranbaxy and the Dark Side of Indian Pharma by Katherine Eban (Juggernaut); Animal Intimacies: Beastly Love in the Himalayas by Radhika Govindrajan (Penguin Random House); Kuknalim: Testimonies of Leaders, Pastors, Healers and Soldiers by Nandita Haksar and Sebastian Hongray (Speaking Tiger); A Chequered Brilliance: The Many Lives of VK Krishna Menon by Jairam Ramesh (Penguin Random House); The Unquiet River: A Biography of the Brahmaputra by Arupjyoti Saikia (Oxford University Press); Savarkar: Echoes from a Forgotten Past, 1883-1924 by Vikram Sampath (Penguin Random House); 2019: How Modi Won India by Rajdeep Sardesai (HarperCollins Publishers) and Midnight’s Machines: A Political History of Technology in India by Arun Mohan Sukumar (Penguin Random House).
The six-book shortlist of the award will be declared on November 16 and the winner will be announced in December. Historian Ornit Shani won the Prize last year for her How India Became Democratic (Penguin Random House) and Milan Vaishnav for his When Crime Pays: Money and Muscle in Indian Politics (Harper Collins) in 2018.