New Delhi, Oct 23: Urdu poet Munawwar Rana who recently announced to give up his Sahitya Akademi award over rising cases of religious intolerance within the country, said that he would be happy to carry Prime Minister Narendra Modi's shoe if latter invite him as an elder brother.
According to a Indian Today report, the Rae Bareli-born writer and Sahitya Akademi awardee Rana on Thursday said that if Modi invite him in the capacity of an elder brother, he is even ready to carry his shoes.
Rana (62), a big name in contemporary Urdu poetry said, "He is like my elder brother. And I have said in one of my poems that if loved like an elder brother, I would happily pick up his shoes".
The statement is being seen as an attempt to get close to Prime Minister Modi to clear the air over the issue.
Earlier, noted writer said that he got a call from PMO to meet Prime Minister. "I got a call from PMO on Tuesday with a request to meet him the next day. As I was in Gwalior I said that it was not possible and the date and time should be fixed for some other day...On this I was told that it will take some time," Rana told.
"I will meet the PM as a poet with reference to Ganga-Jamuna tehzeeb of the country. My intention is to live the life which I was born with," he further said.
On being asked if he will meet PM along with other litterateurs, he said, "Somebody goes with me or not is his or her personal choice, but if Modi calls me I will definitely meet him."
Meanwhile, Rana evaded the question of accepting his award again
if Prime Minister would request.
Rana had recently announced to give up his Sahitya Akademi award dramatically during a live TV debate over the killing of Kannada writer MM Kalburgi and lynching of a man in Dadri for allegedly consuming beef.
Rana was conferred the Sahitya Akademi award by Modi government in 2014 for his book 'Shahdaba'.
(With inputs from PTI )