Rushdie finds ploy by police

Rushdie finds ploy by police

Rajasthan cops deny contact with author

Rushdie finds ploy by police

The Salman Rushdie row refused to die with the controversial author on Sunday slamming the Rajasthan police for “inventing” a death threat to keep him away from the Jaipur Literature Festival.

A file picture shows Indian-born British author Salman Rushdie. AFP

The police, however, denied any contact with Rushdie or sharing any information with the author on intelligence, putting festival organisers in the dock.

A day after Mumbai police refuted reports that they had passed on information about “paid assassins being on their way”  to eliminate Rushdie, the 64-year-old author took to microblogging site Twitter to vent his anger.

“The Rajasthan police invented plot to keep away Rushdie’ I’ve investigated, & believe that I was indeed lied to. I am outraged and very angry,” he tweeted.
Rushdie said he does not know if the false intelligence information was given by the Rajasthan police under instructions from someone.

“Don’t know who gave orders. And yes I guess the same police who want to arrest (authors) Hari, Amitava, Jeet and Ruchir. Disgusting,” he said responding to a comment on whether it is the same police force which now wants to arrest writers for reading passages of his banned work “The Satanic Verses” at the festival.

Authors Hari Kunzru, Amitava Kumar, Jeet Thayil and Ruchir Joshi read passages from the controversial book “The Satanic Verses” on the opening day of the festival to express solidarity with Rushdie after the he pulled out of the event citing threats to him.

The Rajasthan police have sought a copy of the video footage of the session in which Kunzru and Kumar read excerpts from the banned book, a police source said.

Jaipur City Police Commissioner B L Soni said: “There was no communication between the Jaipur police and Rushdie. Whatever has been transpired is between the organisers and the author. We have no communication with Salman Rushdie. I do not know from where he got the intelligence report. We are providing foolproof security for the event and we are ready to meet any security challenge.”

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, backing the police, said: “We conveyed to the organisers of the festival that there was a security threat to Rushdie, but all security arrangements were in place.”

And there were some local elements also, which were opposed to Rushdie’s visit and were threatening to protest.”

He said Rushdie is a person of Indian origin and does not require a visa to come to India.
Meanwhile, one Ashok Kumar has filed a complaint in Ashok Nagar police station here demanding action against the authors for reading from the banned book.

The police said they are investigating the matter. Some Muslim groups have threatened to move the court against the four writers. The police have stepped up security at Diggi Palace, the venue of the five-day literature festival that began on Friday.

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