The news, though, is stale already. Free speech champions from India like Rana Ayub have already deleted their tweets because they fear the same fate. (Frankly, they know what might be coming for them as they ‘instigate it’ on others using the shield of free speech.) France has condemned it in an implicit way. Many world personalities have condemned it. However, no one is ready to address the elephant in the room. Everyone, surprisingly and shockingly, is looking for a room in the elephant – lame excuses, sorry condolences and sham worry for perils to free speech.
Salman Rushdie was on the target of fundamentalists from many continents for many years now. The leader of the world, Uncle Sam, under the able leadership of ‘able’ Democrats, could not be able to ascertain the freedom that it ‘offered’ to the novelist. And it was waiting to happen. It happened.
Rajiv Gandhi started it in India by banning the book. World leaders of Islamic countries did the same. Progressive nations like the USA and UK are ‘known’ with certain conditions to safeguard free speech and free speakers. Don’t ask me about Snowden, please. Everything comes at a cost. Also, don’t ask about Lawrence’s ban in the UK and various bans in the US for many reasons in many books. However, these two progressive countries support all others who ‘offend’ all others except them (and their people).
Well, we are not here to talk about the political ramifications of banning and censoring literature and free speech. We are in the supposed era of the freedom that is supplied with the internet and one can write anything, read anything and express opinion freely. The only problem is that some people have not yet come out of the perception of freedom and limitations that existed many centuries ago. They cannot accept new rules of engagement. And the world is not ready to condemn the same in a unanimous manner. And until it happens, we have nothing but a consolation to offer to Salman Rushdie and other courageous writers of the world.