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Dec 18 2013

Banning and censorship

The ads of the mega serial that I am writing for TV are all over West Bengal, India.

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The TV channel had telecasted ads every few minutes. One of them was about my return to Kolkata after 6 years. I was thrown out of West Bengal 6 years ago. The channel was giving people a pleasant surprise by saying Taslima the abandoned would come back to the city. It was not actually about my return, but my mega serial’s return. The other ads cleared up the confusion later.

People were happy.

Richard Dawkins was also concerned about the serial. He tweeted:

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But suddenly everything is dead. Everybody is silent. The channel, the producers, the artists all are shocked.

The police and a bunch of Muslim fanatics both asking the channel to ban my TV serial. The funny thing is that the serial has not started going on air but fanatic Mullahs started claiming that my serial ‘could hurt the sentiments of the community’. Mullahs don’t know about the story of the serial but they want to ban it because I have written it. They not only want to vanish me physically, they want to make all my ideas and thoughts vanished. I think they learn the trick from the West Bengal government. The West Bengal government banned my book in 2003 by claiming that my book could hurt the sentiments of Muslims. Mullahs have learned from the government that Muslim sentiments are very precious, their sentiments must not be hurt. So Muslim fanatics have the right to ban films, books, or whatever they like before they even read or watch those, to protect their so called sentiments.

Muslim fanatics opposing my script for mega serial.

Kolkata: Various Muslim organizations of West Bengal have opposed the broadcast of the Bangladeshi writer Taslima Nasreen’s script for a Bengali TV serial ‘Dusahobas’ (Living Difficulties) which, according to them would hurt the sentiments of the Muslims.

Dusahobas’ is slated to be telecast on an entertainment Bengali TV Channel “Aakash Aath” from December 19. According to sources, the serial is based on the travails and experiences in the life of the controversial Bengali author, who has been living in exile in India.

Ads say that the serial is about women’s struggle against dowry, trafficking etc. but the mullahs are saying that it is based on my life. These lunatic fringe try to find an excuse for their insanity. I am banned in West Bengal. So they think books written by me should be banned, anything based on my life should also be banned. These Muslim fanatics are minority in India, but the supports they get from the governments and the politicians make them more powerful and more lunatic.

dusshobas
With a slogan of `Go back Taslima’ Shahi Imam of Tipu Sultan Mosque Maulana Nurur Rahman Barkati and Idris Ali, the member of the West Bengal’s legislative assembly holding a press conference to threaten the channel that decided to show the mega serial written by me.

In a press Conference Shahi Immam of Tipu Sultan Mosque of Kolkata Maulana Nurur Rahman Barkati and All India Minority Forum president Idris Ali said on 14 December that they are opposed to the Bengali channel broadcasting serial on the controversial author’s life.

Maulana Nurur Rahman informed that he has also spoke to the West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee on the issue. Extolling the WB CM of being symbol of communal harmony, the Shahi Imam appealed to her to intervene and immediately stop the broadcast of the serial.

Idris Ali said that there are so many writers even within the country and we don’t necessarily need to follow the controversial Bangladeshi author.

Muhammad Kamruzzaman sent a letter on behalf of 22 Muslim organizations to the Police Commissioner of Kolkata Mr Surajit Kar Purkayashta on 13 December to stop the broadcast, which according to them would disturb the communal harmony in the state.

They have threatened to take to streets if the administration does not stop the broadcast.

The 22 Muslim organization are: 1. All Bengal Minority Youth Federation. 2 West Bengal Sunnat Al Jamat Committee. 3. Magribi Bangal Anjumane Wayezin. 4. Ulama Parishad. 5. All Bengal Muslim Think Tank. 6. Jamiat-E Ahle Hadith West Bengal. 7. West Bengal Aminia Jamiate Muttakin Committee. 8. All India Ahle Sunnat Jamat. 9. All Bengal Minority Council. 10. All Bengal Minority Association. 11. Bangiya Imam Parishad. 12. Jamiatul Ayemma Al Ulama. 13. All India Imams Council. 14. All bengal Imam-Muazzin Council. 15. West Bengal Imam-Muazzin Association. 16. All Bengal Imam Muazzin Samity. 17. Ittehadul Ayemma. 18. Maktab Imam Association. 19. Ittehadul Ayemma and Muazzin Seva Samiti. 20. Tajpur Jamaul Ayemma. 21. Biswa Manabkalyan Islami Society. 22. Jamiat-E Ulamaye Bangla, Furfura Sharif.

Now all the TV ads about the mega serial with my name and videos are censored. My name and pictures are erased from all the ads. My name is deleted from their Facebook page. The channel is probably trying hard to compromise with violent fanatics.

They are going to remove all the billboards. But will they be able to make fanatics happy? I do not think so. Fanatics will go as far they can. They know very well that nobody would come to support me in India.

These fanatics are very good friends of the government. The politicians appease Muslim fanatics because these fanatics lead a very big group of ignorant Muslims. Who doesn’t want to get Muslim votes? They are 25% of the population.

The channel is now giving a statement:

The statement says :

All characters of the serial are entirely fictional. No character of the serial is based on real people. The writer of this serial is NOT coming to Kolkata. The serial has no purpose to hurt anyone’s sentiments. It is not going to hurt sentiments of any religion or any community. It will definitely show respect to all religious communities.

The producers are trying everything to telecast the serial. Ordinary people are eager to watch it. The channel already invested a lot of money for the serial. They are now in a very bad situation. They are not getting government’s supports. All the intellectuals are silent. Many are pro-Islamist leftists, they believe I am not worthy to get their supports because I criticize Islamists. Some think it is a Muslim issue, they should not be involved. The rest are just cowards.

14 comments

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  1. 1
    arijit das

    well, it’s nothing but a ploy by insecured goverment and ignorant radical muslims.

  2. 2
    স্মৃতিলেখা চক্রবর্ত্তী

    This is too bad! Unbelievable, really!

  3. 3
    usri majumdar

    we are living in a very bad condition in w.b. all politicians and intellectuals are coward and hypocrites.

    1. 3.1
      UJJAL

      @ ursi majumdar – bang on. cannot agree more

  4. 4
    Sekhar Roy

    Taslima is more popular among Hindu and forward Muslims in West Bengal those who are much more against CPM misrule for 35 years and TMC took the advantage by wooing Muslim vote managers. Hindus are divided among CPM and TMC. Thats the reality of the day. That means Bengali people are more political than being Hindu. Thats the backdrop why they dont find interest in BJP like parties. But India other than Bengal is probably moving forward towards a civil war where all religious groups are likely to be united against Muslims A sharply divided and polarized people on religious lines is inviting days of fascism. Hindu revivalism has threatened and has shown its ugly heads and Muslims will no longer be safe in this country. A handful of fanatic people is responsible for the changed mindset. Civilisation and democratic secular culture may take a back seat to call for dark days ahead. I am upset Taslima.

  5. 5
    UJJAL

    A religion that promotes to kill any non-believer is being pampered and supported and wooed in bengal by ALL political parties for votes. This directly means that ALL political parties are supporting a probable murderer.

    Lets agree, bong intellectuals have become spineless, cowards and purchased. They prefer to be paper tigers than to voice against a criminal. It is the probable criminals who decide the policy and the govt machinery implements it for votes. Simple. Period.

    The mud in the intellect spines mold them the fanatic way. They have a fiery communist red color outside and a deep green religious fanatism under their ribs. Shame.

  6. 6
    UJJAL

    I can see hoardings are brought down already in Kolkata.

  7. 7
    Sarita

    After demand of baning Books, Muslim fanatics now censor a serial, based on Taslima’s novel… where r we living? is it a city of prominent bengali intellectuals, writers, Nobel prize winners ?
    —NO.
    Billboards r changed, TV promo is changed and now…… TV channel is compelled to ‘apologize’ by showing a Note ‘…its a fiction, writer is not coming literally in kolkata ….bla bla !!’ But to whom? A hand-few of Muslim fundamentalists !!! If those Muslim delegation demand to ban the serial (voicing against women oppression) due to communal disharmony..then question goes to them, coz its cleared that its none but Them who cause such type of disharmony. a mere TV show / a fiction cant damage anyone’s sentiments…..

    Very pathetic !
    When a religious virus affect field of Arts/Culture .. nothing left to relax.

  8. 8
    Amitava Ghosh

    বিগত রাজ্য সরকার যদি সাম্প্রদায়িক তোষামদের জানালা হয় তবে বর্তমান সরকার দরজা।গনতান্ত্রিক রাষ্ট্রে স্বাধীন মতামত প্রকাশের অধিকার রাষ্ট্র কত্তৃক সুনিশ্চিত যদি না সেই মতামত রাষ্ট্র বিরোধী হয়।কি কারনে দূঃসহবাস নিষেধাঙ্গার কবলে পড়ল বুঝলাম না।পৃথীবির অন্যতম বৃহত গনতান্ত্রিক দেশের এই মুখ?নারী নির্যাতনের বিরুদ্ধে যখন সারা দেশ ব্যাপী আওয়াজ ওঠার কথা তখন একজন নারীবাদী মানুষের গলা টিপে মারার প্রচেষ্টায় সামিল সরকার?মৌলবাদী শক্তির কাছে প্রতিনিয়ত এভাবে আত্মসমর্পন গনতন্ত্রের অবমাননা।কলকাতা তথা পশ্চিম বাংলার শুভ বুদ্ধি সম্পন্ন মানুষের কাছে একত্রিত হয়ে এই ঘটনার প্রতিবাদ জানানোর আহবান জানাচ্ছি,এই প্রতিবাদ আন্দোলনে উপস্থিত থাকার অঙ্গীকার করছি।

  9. 9
    SWAPNA RAY

    This is West Bengal, one of the most cultural states amongst the world, now what is happening here???

    Before knowing content of the Mega-serial ( Dusahobas) it is banned for the time being……………….

    In W.Bengal – it is the time, Muslim fanatics and lunatics will decide what serial would be showing in
    the T.V channel or not. Producer should take the permission from them what to show in the billboard or not.

    We never asked for this change in West Bengal………………????

    Where we are now!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Shame…………………W.Bengal ……………………….Shame.

    Freedom is always exclusively for those who think differntly. Taslima’s thinking is something different from the others, especially for the emancipation of women. You have to believe that either today or tomorrow.

    Swapna

  10. 10
    KaKuBh

    “Religion is nothing but some rules which legalised enjoyments on the name of God.”Specially Islam legalised more terms and elements of enjoyment.Most of the verses of islami books centralised on enjoyment.Women are one of the main element of enjoyment, so more liberty has been given in Islam for more marriage and sex based things. The illiterate and half-educated persons easily convinced and ready to make themselves myrter. They can easily think , if they able to kill any “murtad” he will get heven. SO WE NEED TO MAKE OURSELVES FREE FROM THESE TYPE OF RELIGIOS CURSE AND TO BE EDUCATED.

  11. 11
    mohit

    I think they should release every episode on Youtube/Internet as well after it is telecast on TV. This way the episodes will live on forever.

    1. 11.1
      Jeanette

      I wholeheartedly AGREE!

  12. 12
    Ophelia Benson

    Now it’s been stopped.

    It’s an outrage!!

  1. 13
    But suddenly everything is dead. Everybody is silent. » Butterflies and Wheels

    […] wrote a post about banning and censorship two days ago, when the axing of her serial was threatened but not yet a reality. Go read it and […]

  2. 14
    Gender-based censorship » No Country for Women

    […] ally, the Congress Party, would collude with Muslim fundamentalists to suppress free speech. As Nasrin says, it is all about electoral politics. “Who doesn’t want to get Muslim votes? They are 25% of the […]

  3. 15
    Gender-based censorship | Interrete

    […] ally, the Congress Party, would collude with Muslim fundamentalists to suppress free speech.  As Nasrin says, it is all about electoral politics. “Who doesn’t want to get Muslim votes? They are 25% of the […]

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