The New India Foundation (NIF) on Thursday announced three awardees of its inaugural translation fellowships, chosen from across 10 Indian languages for research and translation of three historically significant non-fiction texts originally published in Bengali, Kannada and Marathi to English.
Awarded for a period of six months with a stipend of Rs 6 lakh to each recipient or team, the NIF translation fellowships offer an opportunity for direct mentorship under a language expert committee and NIF trustees, apart from providing financial, editorial, legal, and publishing support.
The three awardees are Venkateswar Ramaswamy (literary translator) and Amlan Biswas (statistician) to translate Nirmal Kumar’s “Diaries 1946-47” from Bengali; N S Gundur (academician and literary historian) to translate D R Nagaraj’s “Allamaprabhu Mattu Shaiva Pratibhe” from Kannada; and Rahul Sarwate (academician and historian) to translate Sharad Patil’s “Marxvad: Phule-Ambedkarvaad” from Marathi.
Instituted to promote non-fiction translations from various Indian languages to English, the fellowships are envisioned to create an expansive cultural reach for works which have thus far been confined to those who understand the original language of their composition.
There are no constraints on genre, style, nationality of the translator, or ideology of the material chosen for the fellowships as long as they are published after 1850 and illuminate the development of modern and contemporary India.
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The jury for these fellowships included NIF Trustees Niraja Gopal Jayal, Srinath Raghavan Manish Sabharwal alongside the language expert committee in all 10 languages, comprising Kuladhar Saikia (Assamese); Ipshita Chanda (Bengali); Tridip Suhrud (Gujarati); Harish Trivedi (Hindi); Vivek Shanbhag (Kannada); Rajan Gurukkal (Malayalam); Suhas Palshikar (Marathi); Jatin Nayak (Odia); AR Venkatachalapathy (Tamil); Ayesha Kidwai and Rana Safvi (Urdu).
Jayal said the three selected books span the genres of personal memoir, philosophical dialogue, and critical theory and each of them is a fine contribution to the rich intellectual tradition in the respective languages.
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