Controversial author Sir Salman Rushdie was left outraged after the Indian state of Rajasthan allegedly shared false information about a threat to his life.
Rushdie, who shot to fame with his Booker Prize winning Midnight’s Children, withdrew from the Jaipur literature festival on 20th January, following warnings that paid assassins would be waiting to kill him.
But the writer believes that the Rajasthan government lied to him about the threat.
However, the government has denied the allegations.
Rushdie was scheduled to be one of the speakers at the five-day event, but was forced to pull out when intelligence sources in Maharashtra and Rajasthan told him that paid assassins from the Mumbai underworld would be targeting him.
He tweeted, “I’ve investigated, & believe that I was indeed lied to. I am outraged and very angry.”
The director-general of the Mahrashta police denied Rushdie’s suspicions and told the Hindu, “When we had no information that gangsters or paid assassins from the Mumbai underworld had planned to eliminate Mr Rushdie.”
Prior to the event, he attracted protests from some Muslim leaders, who demanded that the author to be denied entry into the country.
The 7th Jaipur Literature Festival was attended by TV host Oprah Winfrey and writers, Micheal Ondaaje and Tom Stoppard, who shared the stage with local-dialect authors and ancient language poets.
The backlash relates to Rushdie’s 1988 novel The Satanic Verses, which is banned inIndiabecause of its blasphemous references.
The vice-chancellor ofIndia’s Darul Uloom Deoband seminary had urged the government to block the author’s visit.
The novel, which is made up of three stories, drew criticism as one tale saw a prophet finding a religion in the desert.
The story was inspired by an incident in the Prophet Muhammad’s life, which became known as the ‘Satanic Verses’ because of it’s lack of truth and has been considered as .