Controversial Bangladeshi author Taslima Nasreen, now staying in Delhi out of the public view, Wednesday spoke out in response to the recent Supreme Court order that rules out any legal sanctity to fatwas, saying she wants the one issued against her to be “lifted” so that she could “live a happy and peaceful life”.
“I am the worst sufferer. I have been hounded all through my life because of these diktats. Often they called for my head…and so I had to run from one place to another. Now with them having been declared illegal, will it (one issued against her) be withdrawn? Have those people who issued these fatwas been informed that their diktats are no longer valid?’’ Nasreen, whose next book Nishiddha (Banned) is to come out soon, told The Indian Express.
The Supreme Court’s ruling Monday held that a fatwa “has no place in Independent India” and “cannot be used to punish innocent”.
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The author, meanwhile, questionsed the validity of “government fatwas”. “I want to live in Kolkata but the Mamata Banerjee government does not want that. A TV serial based on a book of mine was banned. What will happen to such government fatwas?” Taslima asked.
She wants the Mamata government “not to create any impediment for my return” while ruing that “those demanding my ouster (in 2007) are now in high positions”.
Since 2007, the author has tried several times to return to Kolkata but both the Left Front government and the Trinamool Congress government opposed her entry under their respective regimes.
Sunanda Mukhopadhyay, chairperson of State Women’s Commission sympathised with the author. “Some day, people will understand what kind of a person she (Taslima) is”.
Giving wind to Taslima’s concerns is Idris Ali, TMC’s Basirhat MP who said that “the state government will never let Taslima to live in Kolkata”. Ali had led the agitation against the author in 2007 as All India Minority Forum secretary.