Wednesday January 17, 2018
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Writers withdraw from Bangalore Lit Festival over ‘growing intolerance’

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Image courtesy: http://bangaloreliteraturefestival.org/
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In a bid to lodge their protest against the letter written by one of the Directors of the Bangalore Lit Festival (BLF), author Vikram Sampath, wherein he stated that he was against writers returning their awards, Kannada writer TK Dayanand and poet Arif Raja have boycotted the festival.

The BLF is scheduled to be held in the city on December 5 and 6.

According to reports, Dayanand has written in his letter of withdrawal from the BLF that, “I have learned that the organisers of BLF have, in their own ways, understood and criticised writers returning awards.

“Writers have the right to protest that way (by returning awards). I have no right to sit in judgement of right and wrong on this. Those who cannot understand the terror within one’s spirit cannot understand any literature, writing or anything that can be lively through a festival.”

Poet Raja in his withdrawal letter to the BLF stated, “In a democracy, the debate on ‘to return or not return awards’ is a fascist thought. This is a writer’s independent prerogative. Sampath’s argument that it is politically motivated is childish.”

Issuing a statement on the row, the BLF directors, authors Vikram Sampath and Shinie Antony have issued a clarification on this controversy they said, “The Bangalore Literature Festival has done Bengaluru proud as it has emerged as the second largest literary conclave in this country and survives as a community funded festival that runs on no agendas.

“BLF is a forum created to democratically discuss, dissent and debate varied viewpoints and opinions and not merely a single strand of thought. Individuals and particularly writers, including the organisers, are entitled to their opinions in a free country like ours.

“However, BLF as a whole is neutral and impartial and subscribes to no single ideology or viewpoint. If we were monochromatic in our views, in the last three editions and this one, we would not have invited diverse shades of opinion in the first place. We organisers work really hard to put the festival together against all odds, staying away from corporate funding thus far.

“The reason for this is we believe that voices need to be kept independent and a rainbow of opinions can then be presented to a discerning audience. To ascribe motives to us is simply mischievous and unwarranted.

“While we respect the decision of the writers who have chosen not to participate in the festival due to certain misgivings, we feel they have deprived a vast section of the audience to listen to their viewpoint. We would still urge them to reconsider and participate in the festival so that their views are heard by all.”

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A Hindu Woman held captive for 7 years due to affair with a Muslim Boyfriend in Delhi

The girl's mother reportedly threatened to commit suicide if she tried to escape, her father would thrash her for bringing dishonor to the family

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Women from different community in rural India. Image source: youthkiawaz.com
  • The 32 year-old female homeopath was found to be a hostage in a Delhi based Hindu family.
  • The girl’s family showed her videos from ‘love jihad’ claiming her boyfriend to be plotting against her
  • The girl while being inside the walls of her house attempted a failed suicide
India has always been known as a country inhabiting various cultures, traditions and religions. As Nehru claimed, the country showcases “Unity in diversity”. However, when it comes to religious tolerance the land has failed to show up when an incident of inter-religious correspondence comes forth.
The news published in The Hindu stated that a 32 year-old female homeopath was found to be a hostage in a Delhi based Hindu family. She was 25 years-old and at the time of the most important phase of her life, her entering into the institution of marriage, she was hosted by her family for being acknowledged in an affair with a Muslim boy by her family.

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She was refused any kind of socialization with no access to internet or telephones. She remained locked inside the four walls of her house since 2009. Her coming out is no miracle, nor it is an outcome of the fact that her parents have realized their mistake. In the absence of her mother, she called the women’s helpline number 181 to seek help and was thus “imprisoned” by the team.
“Her mother reportedly threatened to commit suicide if she tried to escape, her father would thrash her and her family members even threatened to kill her for bringing dishonor to the family,” according to the Hindu report.

pd_domestic_violence_080207_msIt seems one of the most disturbing incidents in an age when the protests for freedom of speech and equality surround the city with the famous universities. One finds the city as epicenter for the celebrations of the “International Women’s Day”, however, the reach of this freedom where all women can exercise their needs seems to lack in a society which apparently discusses the movements like Save Girl Child and educate her.

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The girl while being inside the walls of her house attempted a failed suicide being saved by the family members. The DCW reported, the words she uttered at first were: ‘please rescue me’. Further, the girl also disclosed how her family would show her videos from ‘love jihad’ claiming her boyfriend to be plotting against her.
She didn’t take any action against her parents and even didn’t ask for any hold against her boyfriend if he had moved on.  She is under the protection of DCW in their shelter and is happy to be rescued from the life as bad as in a prison.

 

-prepared by Megha Sharma, a freelance contributor at NewsGram. Twitter: @meghash06510344

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