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First-time Indian author wins Booker prize

Aravind Adiga won the prestigious Man Booker prize Tuesday for his first novel "The White Tiger."
/ Source: The Associated Press

Aravind Adiga won the prestigious Man Booker prize Tuesday for his first novel "The White Tiger."

Adiga won the 50,000 pound (US$87,000) prize for a novel about a protagonist who will use any means necessary to fulfill his dream of escaping impoverished village life for success in the big city.

At 34, Adiga was the youngest of the finalists for the literary prize.

The chairman of the judges, Michael Portillo, said the book was an impressive work.

"The novel is in many ways perfect. It is quite difficult to find any structural flaws with it," he said.

Some have accused Adiga, who lives in Mumbai, of painting a negative picture of modern India and its huge underclass but Adiga said the novel was meant to be provocative.

"It's not a book that's meant to ingratiate itself with anyone," Adiga told the British Broadcasting Corp. before the prize was announced. "The tone of it was meant to be provocative and even a bit nasty at times. It's meant to get people thinking."