13 February, 2021

Parag Honour List for 2021 announced; features titles such as The Miracle on Sunderbaag Street and Jungle Kiska

  • The list was launched by author and actor Soha Ali Khan, today
  • Currently in its second edition, this annual List features best of children’s books published in the past one year across fiction, non-fiction and poetry genres.

India, February 13, 2021: Parag Initiative of Tata Trusts today announced the Parag Honour List 2021, featuring a wide range of original writings in the category of picture books, young readers and young adults, across fiction, non-fiction and poetry genres. Currently in its second edition, Parag Honour List is a curated collection of outstanding books in English and in Hindi, for children and young adults, by the Parag Initiative of Tata Trusts.

The list, published annually, comprises noteworthy books of the year with brief information about each title. Experts in the children’s literature sector create it with careful screening and multiple reviews. For this year, Parag received books from 26 Indian publishers, published between October 2019 to September 2020.

Parag Honour List aims to promote access to a comprehensive curated list of good quality children’s literature that librarians, teachers, parents and children can refer to and read.


Kya Tum Ho Meri Daadi? Sonika Deshpande Jugnoo Prakashan
Jungle Kiska Samita Uika Muskaan
Taarik ka Suraj Shashi Sablok Jugnoo Prakashan
Mitti Madhu Dhruve Muskaan
School Mein Humne Seekha Aur Sikhaya Nikeeta Dhruve Muskaan
Chaar Cheetiyaan Shyam Sushil Eklavya
Godam Vinod Kumar Shukl Jugnoo Prakashan
Tees ki Murgi Bees Mein Sankalan Eklavya
Bhool Bhulaiya Sankalan Eklavya
Tum Bhi Aana Naveen Sagar Jugnoo Prakashan
Bhai Tu Aisi Kavita Kyun Karta Hai? Sushil Shukl Jugnoo Prakashan
Mera Khachhar Danda Hai Sankalan Eklavya
Ek Chor Ki Chaudah Raatein Arun Kamal Jugnoo Prakashan
Pehli Udaan Amit Kumar Jugnoo Prakashan
Hawa Mithaai Arun Kamal Jugnoo Prakashan


A Saree for Ammi Mamta Nainy Tulika Publishers
Ammachi's Incredible Investigation Vinayak Varma Pratham Books
Bombay Ducks, Bombay Docks Fleur D’Souza Pratham Books
Tail Tale Anushka Ravishankar Tara Books
The Laddoo Code Saksham Arora Pratham Books
The Miracle on Sunderbaag Street Nandita Da Cunha Kalpavriksh
Zakir and His Tabla: Dha Dhin Na Sandhya Rao Tulika Publishers
Friends Behind Walls Harshikaa Udasi Puffin Books by Penguin Random House India
Mini's Questions Nandini Nayar HarperCollins Publishers India
My Daddy and the Well Jerry Pinto Duckbill Books by Penguin Random House India
Nadya Debasmita Dasgupta Scholastic India Pvt Ltd
The Piano: Story of a Friendship Nandita Basu Duckbill Books by Penguin Random House India
Who's There? Hansda Sowvendra Shekhar Duckbill Books by Penguin Random House India
Girl Power Neha J. Hiranandani Scholastic India Pvt Ltd
The Swan Car of Nabha and other Unusual Stories from History Live History India HarperCollins Publishers India
Journey to the Forbidden City Deepa Agarwal Puffin Books by Penguin Random House India
Queen of Earth Devika Rangachari Duckbill Books by Penguin Random House India
Candid Tales – India on a Motorcycle Adithi Rao HarperCollins Publishers India
Unearthed – An Environmental History of Independent India Meghaa Gupta Puffin Books by Penguin Random House India
First Katha Book of Haiku, Senryu, Tanka and Haibun Various Poets Katha

Soha Ali Khan, author and actor, who launched the list today, shared her views on the initiative, she said, “I am happy and excited to launch the Parag Honour List 2021. Reading is crucial to building critical citizens. Curated reading lists such as PHL can support educators, librarians and parents to know about the best Indian children’s books being published each year. I congratulate the Parag Initiative of Tata Trusts for its effort in popularising Indian publishers, authors and illustrators.”

Swaha Sahoo – Head, Parag Initiative, Tata Trusts: “Parag Honour List 2021 features 35 titles in Hindi and English. The collection was created after careful screening and multiple reviews by experts of children’s literature. At the launch of PHL last year we received enthusiastic responses from parents, teachers and children, with many marking books they wanted to read. We hope that the PHL 2021 also enables access and awareness about outstanding Indian books for children and young adults.”

Dr Suneeta Mishra, a jury member for Parag Honour List 2021 and a linguistics professor in the Department of Elementary Education at the Institute of Home Economics (Delhi University) commented, “I think the most important dimension of children's literature is to have enough opportunities for children's imagination and their perspective to see and understand the world. The purpose of children's literature is not just to make children into stories, but to understand the world and life experiences from the perspective of children. Two things are important here – one, it is not always necessary to be very simple or positive and secondly, there should also be content in children's literature for teenagers and young adults.”

Arvind Gupta, a jury member for PHL 2021, a Padma Shri awardee and a toy inventor who is popular for designing teaching aids for young children remarked on the list, “Over the last two decades, a handful of Indian authors have significantly contributed to develop and grow the Indian children’s literature scene in the country with stories that talk to young readers about who they are, and help them navigate a multicultural and multilingual environment. With Parag Honour List, we aim to showcase the best children’s books published in India in a particular year. This year there were several good picture biographies of iconic Indians - Ustad Zakir Hussain – the table maestro, Srinivasa Ramanujan - the great mathematician, Pandit Nain Singh Rawat -surveyor extraordinary, Mithali Raj - cricketer, and ace astronaut Sunita Williams. We need many more picture biographies of eminent people to inspire our young.”

As part of the criteria for creating the Parag Honour List, all leading publishers of children’s books are requested to submit their select titles for review. In turn the books sent to a panel of eminent educationists and bibliophiles for their comments and feedback. A broad criterion is laid for the choosing the best amongst the submitted books. The jury then discusses each book threadbare and the very best find their way to the Parag Honour List.

Since inception in 1892, Tata Trusts, India’s oldest philanthropic organisation, has played a pioneering role in bringing about an enduring difference in the lives of the communities it serves. Guided by the principles and the vision of proactive philanthropy of the Founder, Jamsetji Tata, the Trusts’ purpose is to catalyse development in the areas of health, nutrition, education, water, sanitation and hygiene, livelihood, digital transformation, migration and urban habitat, social justice and inclusion, environment and energy, skill development, sports, and arts and culture. The Trusts’ programmes, achieved through direct implementation, partnerships and grant making, are marked by innovations, relevant to the country.

Arundhati Deosthale writes, translates, and edits children's books from different cultures dabbling in Hindi, Marathi and English. Presently, she works in a cluster of Himalayan villages for literacy promotion through reading and has set up a network of libraries. She has a special interest in girl child's right to education and opportunities to grow.

Gurbachan Singh has worked in public schooling for almost four decades. During this time, he has been the Director of State Resource Center, Bhopal. He is a founder member of the Children's Literature Center, Tikamgarh and has been associated with this organization for two decades. Being the editor of the educational Palash and children's magazine 'Gullak', he has a special interest in children's literature and sees it as an essential component in quality education of children and adolescents. Currently, he is the executive editor of 'Pathshala bheetar aur baahar', a magazine on education published by Azim Premji University.

Dr Suneeta Mishra teaches language and linguistics papers in the Department of Elementary Education at the Institute of Home Economics (Delhi University). She has special interest in the use of storytelling and children's literature as pedagogical tools in learning language skills and other areas of knowledge. Another area of her interest which is also her research area is 'the relationship between language and cognition'.


Arvind Gupta did B.Tech from IIT Kanpur in 1975. He is primarily a toy maker but has an abiding interest in children’s books. He has won several awards for popularizing science including the Padma Shri. He shares his passion for books and toys through his popular website www.arvindguptatoys.com

Prachi Kalra is a teacher educator at Delhi University. She also teaches a course on children’s literature and storytelling. She grew up listening to stories from her mother and grandmother, stories of Sheikh Chilli and birds drowning in poop. Prachi has a PhD in storytelling from Delhi University and lives in Delhi. She has a sizeable collection of children’s books, built by scouring book fairs and second-hand book shops. Prachi’s dream is to open a public library for children.

Samina Mishra is a documentary filmmaker, writer, and teacher based in New Delhi, with a special interest in media for and about children. Her work uses the lens of childhood, identity and education to reflect the experiences of growing up in India. She also runs ‘The Magic Key Centre for the Arts and Childhood’.

For further details, please contact:

Nayantara Dutta

Tata Trusts


+91 98190 52768

Shreya Mehta

Current Global


+91 9999227267