ACJ Award for Investigative Journalism
K P Narayana Kumar Memorial Award for Social Impact Journalism



The Asian College of Journalism, with the support of the Media Development Foundation, has instituted two awards to recognise and encourage the best works of journalism produced for an Indian audience. The purpose of the awards is to promote journalism in the public interest.

ACJ Award for Investigative Journalism

As part of its functioning, the news media unearths wrongdoing and holds power to account. This award is to act as a catalyst and inspire more journalists, editors and newsrooms to pursue investigative work and, in the process, raise the standards of journalism and contribute to the public interest.

Understanding Investigative Journalism
Investigative journalism, for the purpose of the award, will be that which exposes wrongdoing in the public interest. It could cover a wide variety of journalistic investigation including abuse of public office, environment and human rights violations, financial fraud and corporate mismanagement, gender-related violence, political apathy, war crimes, civic neglect and much more. This is only an indicative list of what could come within the ambit of investigative journalism. The judging criteria will include the nature of the investigation, its impact and the extent of the public interest involved.

The award will comprise a trophy, citation and a cash prize of INR 2,00,000/- (two lakh rupees).

The K P Narayana Kumar Memorial Award for Social Impact Journalism

K P Narayana Kumar, an alumnus of the Asian College of Journalism from the class of 2000, died in 2019 at the age of 39. ‘KP’ or Narayan as he was known, built a brand around his signature journalistic style of storytelling, which went beyond the obvious and highlighted injustice across society. Not only was he a wonderful writer, but KP was also much loved for his kindness and generosity. He is fondly remembered and missed by his family, colleagues, friends and faculty. To celebrate his work and life, the alumni from the class of 2000 have instituted this new award.

The K P Narayana Kumar Memorial Award for Social Impact Journalism will honour exceptional, original reporting on important subjects with the potential to have social impact, spur reform and find solutions.

Understanding Social Impact
For the purposes of the award, social impact journalism involves identifying a latent social problem and reporting in a way that points to possible solutions. The reportage should ideally give voice to the voiceless and shine a light on under reported subjects lost in the drumbeat of breaking news. These stories should take aim at important social, cultural, political or economic problems and create impact.

The award will comprise a trophy, citation and a cash prize of INR 1,00,000/- (rupees one lakh).


1. Entries can be made in any format, including print, digital, text, multimedia (videos, podcasts, graphics, etc.).

2. Entries should have been published primarily for and accessed by audiences in India.

3. Entries can be made for work appearing in any language, as long as an English language translation is provided for the judging process. The English translation should be faithful to the original work. The work will be judged based on the English translation.

4. Organisations or individuals may apply, based on the nature of the work. Individuals or teams may be nominated.

5. Each entrant (individual or team) can submit a maximum of three separate entries in each award category – investigative and social impact.

6. Each entry could have several parts, such as a series of articles or episodes in a web series.

7. Winners’ work shall be documented and showcased on the ACJ website with appropriate credits and links to the original source and publisher/creator(s).

8. The ACJ Awards Committee reserves the right to request nominees to authenticate the publication of their work(s). This includes proof of publication, or, where such proof is not available, a letter of authentication from the publisher or producer.

Important Dates

1. Only journalistic work that was published from 1 January 2020 to 31 December 2020 will be considered.

2. The deadline for nominations/entries is extended to March 8, 2021. Entries submitted after this date will not be considered.

3. The winners will be presented the awards in June 2021 at the ACJ Awards and Convocation Ceremony.

Awards Jury

The Awards Jury will be announced soon.


For any queries about the awards, please write to:

Nikhil Kanekal, ACJ Awards Convenor, Email:, Cell: (+91) 9611511159

Lakshmi Ramji, Bursar, ACJ, Email: Off: 044-22542840 / 22542842 – 47

Form Submission:
Nomination submission form for the ACJ Awards