Monday, Oct 03, 2022
Outlook.com
Commonwealth Prize

Salman For Dinner

J.M. Coetzee and Jeffrey Moore won the coveted awards but Rushdie hogged the limelight

Salman For Dinner
Salman For Dinner
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

If Delhi betted on the Commonwealth Book Awards in the same manner as London betted on the Booker, the jackpot this year wouldn’t have been about the author who picked up either the Best Book or the Best First Book award. It would have been about whether Salman Rushdie, India’s most famous exile, would show up for the gala evening held last Friday.

The presence of Delhi’s finest khaki-clad defenders, fresh from their involvement in the Hansie Cronje match-fixing scandal, was a dead giveaway at the Oberoi Hotel. And yet, rumours persisted - justified by the fact that Rushdie sightings were commanding as much space as Elvis sightings in middle America. When it became clear that the world’s most famous author-in-hiding was actually on the premises, it set the tone for a feeding frenzy as camera crews used tripods to batter a way through to midnight’s messiah.

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