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The 1998 Ig Nobel Award for Peace

Atal Bihari Vajpayee meeting Nawaz Sharif (Source: Outlook (Vajpayee, Sharif; Prashant Panjiar))

In the year of 1998, the then prime ministers of India and Pakistan, Messrs. Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Nawaz Sharif, were jointly awarded the Peace prize at an award ceremony held at Harvard. They were so honoured "for their aggressively peaceful detonations of atomic bombs". Neither of them deigned to accept the award in person.

The prize in question was one of the categories of the annual Ig Nobel Prizes which are awarded each year to honour "achievements that first make people laugh, and then make them think". The name is a play on the word ignoble ("characterized by baseness, lowness, or meanness") and the name "Nobel" after Alfred Nobel. While they are a parody of the Nobel Prizes, the Ig Nobel prizes are presented by actual Nobel laureates and are broadcast on public radio as well as via the Internet.

On May 11 and May 13, 1998, India detonated five nuclear devices at Pokharan in Rajasthan. Pakistan retaliated a couple of weeks later with six "tests" of their own.