Saturday, Sep 24, 2022

Booker Prize Winner Geetanjali Shree’s Event Called Off In UP After Alleged Objectionable Comments In Her Novel

Booker Prize winner Geetanjali Shree’s event in Uttar Pradesh was cancelled after complaint about alleged objectionable comments on Lord Shiva and mother Parvati in her novel ‘Tomb of Sand’ surfaced.

Booker prize winner Geetanjali Shree.
Booker prize winner Geetanjali Shree. Twitter

An event to honour International Booker Prize winner Geetanjali Shree in Uttar Pradesh’s Agra on Saturday was called off by the organisers after a complaint was filed against the author alleging there are some objectionable comments about Indian deities in her novel. 

The felicitation event was to be hosted by cultural organisations Rangleela and Agra Theatre Club. 

"The event was called off due to a controversy over a complaint against the International Booker prize winner Geenjali Shree," Anil Shukla, a functionary of Rangleela, told PTI. 

"A man named Sandeep Kumar Pathak from Sadabad in Hathras district has filed the complaint against the writer. In the complaint, he has blamed Geetanjali Shree for alleged objectionable comments on Lord Shiva and mother Parvati," he said. 

Spokesperson of the event Rambharat Upadhyay said that in his complaint, Pathak mentioned that the comments have "hurt the sentiments of Hindus".

In May, Shree became the first Indian author to win the International Booker Prize for her novel "Ret Samadhi", which was translated into English as "Tomb of Sand" by American translator Daisy Rockwell. 

Set in north India, "Tomb of Sand" is the tale of  80-year-old Ma, who insists on travelling to Pakistan, simultaneously confronting the unresolved trauma of her teenage experiences of Partition, and re-evaluating what it means to be a mother, a daughter, a woman and a feminist.

Upadhyay also said Pathak had tweeted requesting Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and the DGP for an FIR against Shree.

Shukla said people are disappointed over the cancellation of the event.

(With PTI inputs)