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Muslims join hands with Hindus to protest SC verdict on Shivaji book

Sunday, July 11, 2010 08:09:31 PM, Agencies

Maharashtra Govt wants ban on Shivaji book to continue: Maharashtra Government said it favoured continuation of the ban on US author James Laine's controversial biography of Shivaji Maharaj and was seeking legal opinion after ... Read Full

Maharashtra Govt. seeking legal opinion on book ban

Mumbai: A day after the Supreme Court lifted the ban, opposition to James Laine's controversial book Shivaji: Hindu King in Islamic India gathered momentum with political outfits of many hues demanding a complete ban.

While protests by right-wing Hindutva organisations like Sambhaji Brigade and Shivrajya Paksha that deify the Maratha warrior king is expected, many have been surprised by the number of Muslim organisations which have come together to protest the apex court's ruling.

All India Ulema Council General Secretary Maulana Mahmood Daryabadi said this support was in keeping with the tenets of Islam. "Islam says that we should support any effort which prevents the spread of hate in society.

The Koran is against disrespecting religious or social figures of other communities. This is why we are opposed to lifting the ban on Laine's book," he said.

When asked if this was linked to the fear that lifting the ban on Laine's book will increase demands for lifting ban on other controversial books like Salman Rushdie's Satanic Verses, he said, "The issues are not linked but yes, why should anything that can hurt people's feelings be allowed to publish? Anything that disturbs the peace and harmony of society should not be allowed."

Former MLC, Brigadier Sudhir Sawant of the Shivrajya Paksha attacked the government for "being soft on those who attack Shivaji Maharaj."

He said, "The government did not appoint competent lawyers to represent its side at both at the High Court and the Supreme Court because of which the ban was lifted."

He reminded the NCP how it had used the issue to garner votes in the 2004 elections. "What have they done since and why are they quiet now?" Sawant asked.



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