Is there any panel to study books that attract controversies: HC

The petitioner submitted through his counsel R Thirumoorthy that the government banned his book after certain communities raised objections to the book.
Madras HC
Madras HC

CHENNAI: The Madras High Court on Friday directed the Tamil Nadu government to file a report explaining whether there is any committee, to examine the nature of books that are attracting debates and disagreements.

Justice RM Subramanian passed the order on hearing the petition filed by Kulandairaj aka Kulandai, a resident of Thuraiyur in Tiruchirappalli district.

The petitioner sought direction from the court to quash the 2015 order of the Home Department banning his book named ‘Madurai Veeran Unmai Varalau’ and to allow him to release his work.

The petitioner submitted through his counsel R Thirumoorthy that the government banned his book after certain communities raised objections to the book.

“The government cannot extract any stray sentences found in a portion of the book and come to a finding that the said book as a whole ought to be forfeited. The whole theme of the book portrays the character to highlight the greatness and bravery of the Madurai Veeran who is worshipped as God by the Dalit people. Therefore, a certain portion which is based upon community would not be a ground for the forfeiture of the book and therefore the impugned notification is liable to be set aside, ” the petitioner submitted.

The petitioner’s counsel also noted that banning a book is against the freedom of expression. He further submitted the court order related to writer Perumal Murugan’s Madhorupagan book issue.

Recording the submissions, the judge asked the government advocate whether there is any committee in the government to analyze the books which fall into controversies, and “if yes, who are the members of the committee?” the judge asked. He wanted the State to file it as a counter on August 29.

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