Our freedoms, your lordships

March 4, 2008

Pratap Bhanu Mehta in The Indian Express says some Supreme Court orders are inimical to liberal values 

All due respect to the Supreme Court, it is now fair to say that unwittingly some of its orders are giving aid and succour to all those tendencies that are out to subvert liberal values in this country. For the second time in less than a year, the Supreme Court has passed an order that should send a shiver down the spines of all those who care about freedom and the possibility of open-minded scholarship. In an order passed in the context of a Special Leave Petition 8931, the Supreme Court has suggested that “after hearing the learned counsel for parties at some length we feel that if Paras 2,5,7 and 8, of the Schedule are omitted, interest of justice would be best served.” The court clarifies that this suggestion shall “not in any way affect the merits of the issue involved,” which shall be examined after the response of “respondent no 4” is received.

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Back with a book

January 19, 2008

Indrajit Hazra profiles Salman Rushdie for the Hindustan Times

ONE OF the most honest yet under-reported reasons for anyone wanting to become a successful writer is that he can impress and get the girl. (For women, the world still being tragically gender-skewed, the reason for writing is thought to be more noble: for the pleasure of writing.) In the case of Salman Rushdie, noted author and fatwa-fuelled cerebral celebrity every new book, like it or not, sounds like a mating call.

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Rushdie’s fatwa on thought police

January 16, 2008

Salman Rushdie

Salman Rushdie speaks to the Times of India’s Dina Vakil on artistic freedom, Taslima Nasreen and his new book

Salman RushdieSalman Rushdie“I don’t make my decisions based on 25 goondas at the gate,’’ says Salman Rushdie tartly. The original enfant terrible of Indo-Anglian fiction, now a battle-worn but still feisty 60, is referring to the handful of Samajwadi Party workers and assorted agitationists who staged their de rigeur protest against his recent visit to the city. “In any case, in the Indian context, two dozen people is actually nobody.’’

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