The JCB Prize for Literature is a Rs 25-lakh award presented each year to a distinguished work of fiction by an Indian author.

The Prize aims to celebrate Indian writing, and to help readers across the world discover the very best of contemporary Indian literature. It makes significant awards also to translators, without whose work no reader can appreciate the scale and diversity of a literature written in over twenty languages.

Each year, the Literary Director appoints a jury of prominent individuals from various areas of Indian social and intellectual life. Every member of the jury reads every novel entered for the Prize. The jury is alone responsible for selecting the longlist (of ten), the shortlist (of five), and the winner.


Mita Kapur is the founder and CEO of Siyahi, India’s leading literary consultancy. Her first book, The F-Word, is a food book, memoir and travelogue. She has edited Chillies and Porridge: Writing Food, an anthology of essays on food. As a freelance journalist, she writes regularly for different newspapers and magazines on social and development issues along with travel, food and lifestyle. She curated Masala Chowk, a food court in street food in Jaipur in 2018, and was a member of the executive council for Jawahar Kala Kendra from November 2016 – October 2018. She is also the producer for the Woman Up! Summit, and Soul Connect Experiences, and was producer for Mountain Echoes – The Bhutan festival of Art, Literature and Culture (2010-2019). Mita is currently Literary Director for the JCB Prize for Literature.

The JCB Prize for Literature is administered by Literary Director Mita Kapur, along with Shailly Prabha and Priyanjali Datta, who take care of operations, marketing and literary relations for the Prize.


The JCB Prize for Literature trophy was designed by artist duo Thukral and Tagra in 2018.

Mirror Melting is cast in aluminium and coated in highly reflective nickel. It stands twelve inches high.

The Prize is funded by JCB, the global construction equipment manufacturer, and administered to the highest standards of integrity by the JCB Literature Foundation. Each year, the deliberations of the jury are audited from beginning to end by third party process auditors.


Tarun Das

Business Leader (Chair Person)

He has spent his professional career in the development and promotion of Indian Industry. Starting in November 1963 with the predecessor body of Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) he was the Director General and Chief Executive of CII from April 1967 to May 2004 and Chief Mentor from June 2004 to October 2009. His leadership of the organization over three decades has led to strengthening business and strategic ties between India and the world. The Government of India awarded him the third highest civilian honour of the Padma Bhushan, in 2006, for his contributions to Indian trade and industry.

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Pheroja Godrej

Art Historian

She is an Art-historian, environmentalist and writer. Her literary career co-relates history, travel, painting and studies of British artists in India (1690-1930). The publications which she has co-written or co-edited include, Scenic Splendours: India through the Printed Image; Under the Indian Sun, Bombay to Mumbai - Changing Perspectives; A Zoroastrian Tapestry: Art, Religion and Culture and Indian Life and Landscape by Western Artists - Paintings and Drawings from the Victoria and Albert Museum - 17th -early 20th C. She is a reputed curator and Director of Cymroza Art Gallery, Mumbai,

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Harish Trivedi

Professor & Translator

He is a professor in the Department of English, Delhi University, Delhi. He is a widely known scholar of Postcolonialism and translation studies. He was a Commonwealth scholar in the University of Wales, Bangor U.K. He was the visiting Professor at University Of Chicago U.S.A. and School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London in the year 2002. He has also delivered various lectures at various prestigious Universities such as the University of Georgia at Athens, University of Oklahoma, the University of Chicago, etc.

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Vivek Shanbhag

Novelist & Playwright

He is an Indian story writer, novelist and playwright in Kannada. He is the author of nine works of fiction and three plays, all of which have been published in Kannada. His works have been translated into English and several other Indian languages. He also worked as editor for the literary magazine "Desha Kaala" for 7 years. He was a Writer in Residence at the International Writing Program at the University of Iowa during the fall of 2016. He is considered as one of the finest writers of Kannada Literature. His short stories and novels are highly praised by critics.

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Syeda Imam

Writer & Communications Consultant

She is an author, editor, eminent and award-winning communications professional in public service, marketing and advertising. She is on the Board of Ananta Aspen Centre, Bharti Foundation, World Health Partners, Centre for Dialogue and Reconciliation, Rumi Foundation, The Indian School, NIIT University, Neemrana and The Women’s Empowerment Committee, CII. As an author she has been published by Penguin, Macmillan and Roli Books.

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Arundhathi Subramaniam

Poet & Author

She is the award-winning author of poetry and prose. A well-known prose writer on Indian spirituality, she has been a long-standing arts critic, anthologist, performing arts curator and poetry editor. She is the recipient of various awards and fellowships, including the Sahitya Akademi. She has written extensively on culture and spirituality, and has worked over the years as poetry editor, cultural curator and critic.

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The JCB Literature Foundation, a not-for-profit company registered under Section 8 of the Indian Companies Act, is single-handedly responsible for running the Prize.

In 2018, JCB India established the JCB Literature Foundation, whose purpose is to promote the art of literature in India, and whose principal activity is to administer The JCB Prize for Literature. A leading global manufacturer of earthmoving and construction equipment, the company has been active in India since 1979. JCB’s desire to create an enduring cultural legacy in India is based on this substantial and long-standing involvement in the country’s social and economic life.

JCB Literature Foundation

The JCB Literature Foundation is a not-for-profit organization and is a result of JCB’s desire to create an enduring cultural legacy in India that is based on their substantial and long-standing involvement in the country’s social and economic life. The Foundation’s mission is to promote the art of literature in India via working towards enhancing the prestige and the success of contemporary Indian literature, increasing literary awareness, creating greater prominence for literary writers in Indian cultural and intellectual life, foster translation of and between Indian languages, and to communicate to readers everywhere the full diversity of Indian Literature by making a long term and sustained contribution in promoting literature in India.

The rules and eligibility criteria for the 2024 JCB Prize for Literature are available


Entries open 1st March 2024
Deadline for entries 30th April 2024
Deadline for call-in Nominations 31st May 2024
Submission of Final Information 1st August 2024
Announcement of Longlist (of ten) 2nd September 2024
Announcement of Shortlist (of five) 20th October 2024
Awards Ceremony 18th November 2024

JCB Literature Foundation,
B-1 / I-1, 2nd Floor, Mohan Co-operative Industrial Estate, Mathura Road, New Delhi - 110044 India