Close to three years after the Award Wapsi fiasco over alleged rising intolerance, what has now emerged is that the entire episode was politically motivated and stage-managed by those who harboured 'personal hatred' against Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Former Sahitya Akademi president Vishwanath Prasad Tiwari, in the piece titled 'The truth of award-wapsi and the hypocrisy behind it', has squarely accused Hindi poet Ashok Vajpeyi and a few other Left-leaning writers of launching a campaign to defame the government.
In the write up, published in literary magazine Dastavez, Tiwari said a group of 25 writers who were seeking publicity for themselves were also behind Award Wapsi.
"I have evidence to prove award wapsi was not spontaneous but an organised effort led by five writers, many of whom were holding anti-Modi sabhas even before he came to power," wrote Tiwari, who headed the Akademi at the time, as per an ET report.
He also wrote that many writers were pressurised by their peers to be part of the movement.
In 2015, a section of intellectuals started returning their coveted Sahitya Akademi Awards and other national awards to protest against alleged rising incidents of intolerance in the country since Modi Government came to power. The award-wapsi campaign by the writers and artists which gained momentum after the Dadri lynching incident.
While some welcomed the move, many slammed at those returning awards saying it was not the right way to protest. In January 2016, popular English writer Chetan Bhagat termed the 'award-wapsi' campaign as a "fashion".
Even veteran Gujarati literature personality Raghuveer Chaudhary had then termed Award Wapsi as an "immature step". He said returning of awards by some eminent writers was "not proper" way to register protest.