Updated: December 3, 2011 19:03 IST

Winner at 78

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Debut winner: Jamil Ahmad. Photo: Special Assignment
Debut winner: Jamil Ahmad. Photo: Special Assignment

First time author Jamil Ahmad has won the Shakti Bhatt First Book Prize 2011 for The Wandering Falcon. The book faced strong competition from the other five titles on the shortlist, Aman Sethi's A Free Man; A. Revathi's The Truth About Me; Mirza Waheed's The Collaborator; Anirudha Bhattacharjee and Balaji Vittal's R.D.Burman: The Man, The Music; and Shehan Karunatilaka's Chinaman. But the judges - graphic novelist and illustrator Sarnath Banerjee, writer and blogger Jai Arjun Singh, and short story writer Palash Mehrotra - felt there was a quality in The Wandering Falcon that could not be denied.

“Ahmad's prose has a quiet, unshowy beauty and he shows a talent for pure storytelling that would be the envy of many far more experienced novelists,” they said.

Ahmad wins Rs. 1,00,000 in prize money along with a trophy. The award ceremony will be held on December 21 at 7.00 p.m., at the British Council Auditorium, New Delhi.

The Shakti Bhatt Foundation is a non-profit trust. It wishes to reward first-time authors of all ages. For more information, e-mail

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