A New International $25,000 Literary Prize for Punjabi Writers

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November 5, 2013 | NEWS | Post by: admin

Chandigarh, November 5 The Dhahan International Punjabi Literature Prize will be launched on November 11 at an event in JW Mariot Hotel, Chandigarh. The University of British Columbia(UBC) is partnering with Canada India Education Society(CIES)in establishing this strategic International Punjabi Literature Prize which has already been launched in Canada on Oct 8 and now going to be launched here . A cash prize of $25,000 CDN will be awarded annually to one ‘best book’ in either Gurmukhi or Shahmukhi. Two runner-up prizes of $5,000 CDN will be awarded, one for each script. The inaugural Prize will be awarded in the fall of 2014 in Vancouver at a major gala event.
The Dhahan International Punjabi Literature Prize, established by Barj (Barjinder Singh) and Rita Dhahan, family and friends, was founded with the goal to recognize the universality of the Punjabi language, inspire leadership in Punjabi literature and build social bridges between Canada, India, Pakistan and other countries which have vibrant, dynamic and successful Punjabi speaking communities.
A significant endowment fund is being created to insure long term sustainability of the Prize.
CIES has an over twenty-year history of success in leading educational, community development, healthcare and job creation projects in India. Guided by a strong interest in Punjab, the donors have partnered in this venture with the Department of Asian Studies, Faculty of Arts at UBC, which is home to one of the largest and longest standing Punjabi language programs outside of South Asia. The aim of this partnership is to highlight the literature of a rich and passionate language that can speak not only to Punjabis around the world, but to all.

By crossing national borders, the Prize reaches across the boundaries that Punjabi literature itself transcends. Modern Punjabi literature is truly transnational in scope, and at the same time embedded in the rich cultural and literary traditions of the Punjab.

About Barj Singh Dhahan

Barj Singh Dhahan hails from a Sikh family from Dhahan Kalera village, Punjab. He is the son of Dr Budh Singh Dhahan, Chairman, Guru Nanak College of Nursing, Dhahan Kaleran Village. Barj came to Canada in 1967 has since lived in Vancouver, British Columbia.
Barj has been instrumental in launching numerous education, health, and community development projects in British Columbia and in India. Barj convinced the University of British Columbia’s School of Nursing to partner with CIES and Guru Nanak College of Nursing at Dhahan-Kaleran, benefitting primary health care practice, research and education. He completed an important health promotion initiative in 2005, covering 60 villages in Punjab, with nearly $ 500,000 funding from CIES, Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and others. Barj is the also founder and chief executive officer of Sandhurst Group of companies.

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