Jharkhand Bans Sahitya Akademi-Winning Author’s Book for ‘Negative’ Portrayal of Santhals

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HansaAuthor Hansda Sowvendra Shekhar had earlier said he was facing intense online abuse, with a group of Adivasis had taken out a protest against him, burning his effigy and books.

The Jharkhand government has banned a collection of short stories released in 2015, The Adivasi Will Not Dance, on the grounds that it portrayed the Santhal community, particularly women, in a ‘bad light’, the Telegraph reported.

Hansda Sowvendra Shekhar, the author of the book, won the Sahitya Akademi Yuva Puruskar in 2015 for his novel The Mysterious Ailment of Rupi Baskey.

Chief minister Raghubar Das on Friday (August 11) evening asked chief secretary Rajbala Verma to seize all available copies of the book and initiate legal proceeding against the author, the newspaper’s report said. The matter was brought up in parliament on Friday morning by opposition MLA Sita Soren, from the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha, who said the book was derogatory to Santhal women, after which the leader of the opposition in the assembly Hemanta Soren asked that the book be banned.

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Author: Zafar Anjum

I am a writer based in Singapore.

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