Salman Rushdie under SIMI radar; Centre issues alert

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Salman Rushdie
New Delhi, Jan 19: With noted author Salman Rushdie's visit to India still uncertain, there are contradictory reports emerging on his arrival to attend the Jaipur Literary Festival. With authorities taking all necessary precautions in the event of his anticipated visit, the Centre has issued an advisory asking Delhi and Rajasthan police to put all security arrangements in place to avoid any untoward incident.

There are also reports that he could be the target of the outlawed fundamentalist outfit Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI). The Home Ministry have asked the Delhi and Rajasthan police to do the needful to prevent a communal flare-up or any sort of attack.

Another plan by Mumbai-based Raza Academy is also highlighted with Saeed Noorie, general secretary of the Academy announcing a "reward" of Rs 1 lakh to anyone who hurls a slipper at Rushdie.

As per reports by the Home Ministry, SIMI leader Saquib Nachan was "exploring the option of targeting Rushdie during his visit." Nachan was one of the accused in the 2003 Mulund blast case.

The stand taken by Rajastan CM Ashok Gehlot has also irked supporters of freedom of speech and expression. In a subtle way of supporting the fatwa issued by the Deoband, it was reported that Gehlot had requested the organisers of the festival to ask Rushdie to call off his visit considering the fragile law and order situation that has emerged.

Maulana Abul Qasim Nomani maintained his ire at Rushdie and said that he should apologise to Muslims for hurting their sentiments.

OneIndia News

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