So about that lawsuit – check it out.

It starts with “Yo, my client is an educationist, and he happened on your book, and he knows you’ve written other books, yo.”

4.       That my client has read the book authored by you namely the Hindus: An Alternative History. That after reading the book my client found it to be a shallow, distorted and non serious presentation of Hinduism. That it is a haphazard presentation riddled with heresies and factual inaccuracies.


5.       That after reading the said book my client is of the opinion my client states that the aforesaid book is written with a Christian Missionary Zeal and hidden agenda to denigrate Hindus and show their religion in poor light.

6.       That the entire list of the books authored by YOU NOTICEE shows that YOU NOTICEE concentrate, focus and write on the negative aspects and evil practices prevalent in Hinduism. That the words used by YOU NOTICEE for referring to various Hindu Gods are highly objectionable.

7.       That on the book jacket of the book Lord Krishna is shown sitting on buttocks of a naked woman surrounded by other naked women. That YOU NOTICEE have depicted Lord Krishna in such a vulgar, base perverse manner to outrage religious feelings of Hindus. That YOU NOTICEE and the publisher have done this with the full knowledge that Sri Krishna is revered as a divinity and there are many temples for Sri Krishna where Hindus worship the divinity. The intent is clearly to ridicule, humiliate & defame the Hindus and denigrate the Hindu traditions.


8.       That YOU NOTICEE has herself stated that the said book is based on pick & choose method and has selective quotes. That you further state:

“Such a luxurious jungle of cultural phenomena, truly an embarrassment of riches, necessitates a drastic selectivity. I have therefore provided not detailed histories of specific moments but one or two significant episodes.”

9.       That YOU NOTICEE has yourself stated at page 15 that your focus in approaching Hindu scriptures has been sexual.

“The Sanskrit texts [cited in my lecture] were written at a time of glorious sexual openness and insight, and I have focused precisely those parts of the texts.” So the approach of YOU NOTICEE has been jaundiced, your approach is that of a woman hungry of sex.

Also, getting a fact wrong ACCORDING TO MY CLIENT is also a matter for a lawsuit.

11.     That YOU NOTICEE at page 25, incorrectly state that “there is no Hindu canon”. That YOU NOTICEE should know the basic fundamentals of Hindu Religion which hold Vedas to be the Hindu canon as these are revered & respected by all Hindus as divine revelations.

That’s part of a law suit. Item # 11 is part of a law suit. It maketh the mind to totter.

12.     That YOU NOTICEE at page 40 has written:

“If the motto of Watergate was ‘Follow the money’, the motto of the history of Hinduism could well be ‘Follow the monkey’ or, more often ‘Follow the horse’.” This shows the malice and contempt YOU NOTICEE have for Hinduism.

And on and on it goes. It’s basically a very bad crude stupid copy edit, done not by anyone authorized or invited to do a copy edit but by a bystander who dislikes the book. Put another way, it’s a fisking, or a blog post.

Yet somehow it got taken to court, as a lawsuit. And it won! That is, Penguin decided to settle.

Baaaaaaaaaaad precedent, Penguin.


  1. AsqJames says

    I like this bit:

    That the entire list of the books authored by YOU NOTICEE shows that YOU NOTICEE concentrate, focus and write on the negative aspects and evil practices prevalent in Hinduism.

    Not that such “negative aspects” and “evil practices” don’t exist, or even aren’t prevalent, in Hinduism you note. Just that YOU NOTICEE has written about them.

    It makes me think the complaint is not so much “Hinduism is totally awesome and I’m offended that you got it so wrong” as “OK, there’s plenty of bad stuff in Hinduism, I just wish you hadn’t NOTICED”.

  2. rq says

    Picking and choosing quotes? Well, umm, would you rather she just stuck the whole Bhagavad in there?

    I actually laughed at this pharse:

    your approach is that of a woman hungry of sex

    So? Being hungry for sex is now a bad, bad thing, if you’re a woman, and writing a book. *sigh* (What does that make Danielle Steel, then?)

  3. Claire Ramsey says

    Wow. Dismal. Pathetic. Ignorant. Badly written. I hereby declare that the above text offends my sentiments as a worshipper of Clear Writing that Observes Grammatical and Stylistic Conventions of Standard Written English. Even written Indian Legal English or whatever.

    I am offended. And my very own personal sentiments are very very pained. Just like the sentiments of English writers all over the entire globe and our solar system. They (my very own sentiments) now need to take some tylenol w/codeine and put cucumber slices on their eyelids.

    The pain is unbearable.

  4. rnilsson says

    That screed* is disastrously detrimental. That is completely bad. That is not so good.
    I iz offend.
    * Or is it screech?

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