New Delhi is warming up to Bengali culture, Bengali language and Bengali works. As a symbol of international recognition for the Bengali language, Atin Bandopadhyay, Syed Mustafa Siraj, Abul Bashar and Gauro Kishore Ghosh have won the inaugural Surama Choudhary International Awards for Literature and Journalism.

The awards carry Rs.40 lakh as the prize money.

Atin Bandopadhyay won the award for his novel “Neelkantha Pakhir Khoje”, Syed Mustafa Siraj for “Aleek Manush”, Abul Bashar for “Phool Bou” and Gauro Kishore Ghosh for “Prem Nei”.

Dr. M.K. Chaudhuri, Chairman of the awards committee, says, “This is just a co-incidence that all the winners are Bengali.” He further assures that in future the awards will be given to writers and journalists in other languages too.

“I have grown up in Bengal with Muslims and I wanted to know more about them, their joys and sorrows,” says Chaudhuri.

The jury comprised two members, Arun Chakravarty, a journalist and Chaudhari himself.