Jaipur: The organisers of the Jaipur Literature Festival may have warned the authors of serious consequences on reading Salman Rushdie’s controversial book ‘The Satanic verses’ in the festival, but the literary world looks divided on this issue. Some have spoken in favour of Rushdie and some have condemned him.

Surprisingly, Pakistani author Mohammad Hanif has stood up in favour of Salman Rushdie. “I find it quite strange. It is the world’s largest democracy with a multi-cultural society but I think it is unfortunate that Rushdie could not come here. In my opinion it is the basic responsibility of the state to provide security to the citizens and tourists in the country,” said Hanif.

“In my perspective, the state did not succeed in fulfilling its basic duty,” he added.

Writer Suhail Seth targeting the Chief Minister of the state said, “The Chief Minister failed to guarantee safety to Rushdie, therefore it proves that he is a weak CM and should resign immediately.”

Another author Aruna Roy says that Rushdie’s absence from the Literature Festival has dented India’s image. Freedom of expression must be maintained.”

On the other hand renowned author Chetan Bhagat has condemned people for projecting those writers who hurt the religious sentiments of the people as heroes.

Bhagat said, “We should not make heroes out of those writers who are banned.” Although he did say that people should not take law in their own hands and violence should be condemned.

JPN/Bureau