Introducing 96 Indian English Poets for your MFA in Poetry

The way Indian poets know about poets outside the country, seldom do the poets outside India take any interest in Indian poetry owing to linguistic biases and doubts around if Indian English is legit English as spoken around the world.

The below list of poets are representatives of Indian English poetry. This is not an exhaustive list and to expect one won’t be kind on my time and bandwidth. This list originally appeared in 2018 and attracted a massive response around the world. In fact, I cannot thank enough the poet Thomas Graves for introducing the works of poets on that list. Thank you.

This time, I edited the list, dropped a few names, added a few names, and ensured that your time is worth reading each of these poets. I have also excluded poets I would have loved to include because of their negative to negligible digital footprint.

I have no returns to expect but to expect that you all will read our Indian English poets with the same intellectual curiosity I have offered to poets around the world. I would hope that you will use this list for your creative writing classes when Introducing contemporary Indian English Poetry.

96 Indian English Poets for 2020


Amit Shankar SahaSohini Basak |  Mrinalini Harchadrai | Shelly Bhoil | Srividya SivakumarJayanta Mahapatra | Sufia Khatoon| Namrata Pathak


Aryanil Mukherjee | N Ravi Shanker (RaSh) Kazim Ali | Binu Karunakaran Nandini DharSumana RoyAakriti Kuntal | Raghavendra Madhu


Shobhana Kumar | Tishani DoshiSrishti Dutta ChowdhuryAimee Nezhukumatathil  | Ananya ChatterjeeBarnali Ray Shukla | Huzaifa Pandit | Chandramohan Sathyanathan


Sukrita P. Kumar | Vinita AgrawalMustansir Dalvi | Sachin Ketkar | Jennifer Robertson | Arvind Krishna Mehrotra | Rochelle Potkar | Gieve Patel


Amit Majmudar Mosarrap Khan | Rochelle D’SilvaArjun Rajendran  | Aishwarya Iyer  | Meera Nair | Gayatri Chawla | Somrita Urni Ganguly


Maaz Bin Bilal | Urvashi BahugunaSridala Swami |  Aditi Nagrath | Adil JussawallaParesh TiwariAnjali Purohit | Easterine Kire


Tabish KhairAkhil KatyalBabitha Marina JustinJeet Thayil | Saima AfreenAnupama RajuSujatha Mathai | Dion D’Souza


Rohan Chhetri | Sampurna ChattarjiLeeya Mehta | Ranjani Murali Minal HajratwalaRanjit HoskoteUttaran Dasgupta  | Dibyajyoti Sarma


Sudeep Sen | Devashish MakhijaMani Rao | Menka Shivdasani | Nabina DasSmita SahayPreeti Vangani | K. Satchidanandan


Hoshang MerchantShriram SivaramakrishnanK. Daruwalla | CP SurendranNitoo Das |  Kiriti Sengupta | Ankita Shah | Anand Thakore


Linda AshokRajiv MohabirMeena Kandaswamy | Shikha Malaviya | Sanjeev Sethi Aekta KhubchandniArundhathi Subramaniam | Imtiaz Dharker


Sharanya Mannivanan | Priya Sarukkai Chabria |  Ravi Shankar  | Abhay KHarnidh KaurJagari Mukherjee | Jerry Pinto | Karthika Nair


Going forward, I’ll keep adding new names to this calendar and attempt to make it as exhaustive as possible. This will help you take a sneak peek at the works of Indian English poetry in a matter of few minutes so that not only you can name-drop the Indian English poets, sound more inclusive and scholarly, but also quote their voices to make your MFA in Poetry a more diverse program.

This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. Tapas Bandopadhyay

    I guess that’s a list of living Indian poets. Two, how about Vivek Narayanan?

    1. admin

      Sure. Thank you for recommending Vivek Narayanan and indeed he is worthy of mention. The list is, as you have understood, of living poets. When I revise the list the next time, I’ll definitely add his name.

  2. Kavita

    With all due respect to the ‘month by month’ list of Indian poets you have compiled for your ‘MFA in Poetry’, I wonder why you omit stalwarts like Rabindranath Tagore and Sarojini Naidu? Perhaps, they don’t meet your ‘digital footprint’ criterion? I think not. In any case, let me introduce you to the late poet Nissim Ezekiel, who is considered to be a ‘pioneering and foundational figure’ in Modern Indian English Poetry — he has a pretty pronounced digital footprint. His poems are taught widely in classrooms in India and around the world. Google ‘Nissim Ezekiel’ -and find out for yourself. He is also known as the Father of Modern Indian verse in English. I’m intrigued as to how you came up with a list which leaves out poets who are the bedrock of the Indian English Poetry genre. Thank you

    1. admin

      Ma’am meet me anytime and I’ll name you all the names you would love to hear. Not only in English but in regional poetry including Bengali, Malayalam, Assamese, Telegu… The names you mentioned are all well celebrated but deceased and therefore do not qualify my list of living Indian Anglophone poets. As you may see, I haven’t included the name of Eunice D’Souza too, although her poetry is very contemporary.


    Well organised.Encouraging. Wish to send poems.Details please.

  4. Rahul

    Why not include Amit Radha Krishna Nigam?
    He has three english poetry books, brilliant and new voice.

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