Govt extends Taslima Nasreen's visa

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New Delhi, Feb 15: The government today decided to extend the visa of Bangladesh's writer Taslima Nasreen, who has taken refuge in India, but hoped that she does not do anything to hurt India's secular ethos and people's sentiments.

A spokesman of the External Affairs Ministry said here that throughout its history, India has had a tradition of offering hospitality to those who seek it. ''It (India) has also afforded protection to those who have come as our guests. Ms. Taslima Nasreen is our guest and, in keeping with our traditions, we have offered her the same privileges,'' the spokesman said.

He said that it was, therefore, incumbent on those who are welcomed as guests in India, that they remained sensitive to India's traditions and not conduct themselves in a manner that would either affect India's relations with other countries or hurt secular ethos.

''We expect that they do not undertake actions that could hurt the sentiments of the many communities that make up our multi-religious and multi-ethnic nation. These are the same restraints which we in India follow. We expect nothing less from our guests,'' he added.

The spokesman, however, did not say for how long the visa has been extended.


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