Friday, August 18, 2006

Once an outcast always an outcast

The Indian government acting on either vested interests or bureaucratic bungling failed to renew Taslima Nasreen’s visa (author of “Lajja: Shame”). As a cruel joke, they issued a tourist visa valid for 6 months.

Ms. Nasreen fled her home in Bangladesh due to a fatwa issued against her life by an Islamic cleric. Even after repeatedly expressing her desire to settle down permanently in India, the government has effectively denied her citizenship. They have decided to play into the hands of fundamental extremists and put her life in danger.

The myopic government stand has negated traditional Indian hospitality extended to political and humanitarian refugees like the Dalai Lama and condemned Taslima Nasreen to the life lived by Salman Rushdie – always on the lookout for the next extremist to take her life.

2 comments:

Gunderson said...

Just to clarify. She'd be inherently safer in India as opposed to somewhere else, i.e. further away from where the fatwa was issued?

What I'm getting at is, how does India's allowing her or not allowing her to stay there make here any more or less safe?

bluesman said...

Safety is also dependent on one's perception of one's environment. Agreed she's next door to bangladesh, but she feels more comfortable and safe in calcutta than anywhere else at present. She first fled to the european union after which she decided to come to India.