MP: Scholar Shamsul Islam's Event Cancelled on “Gov't Orders”
Citing “government orders”, the Jal auditorium in Indore, Madhya Pradesh cancelled around March 22, 2022 an event where retired author and professor Shamsul Islam was to speak. Although Islam visited various places in Bhopal in the last two days, he said it is the first time that the government has tried to obstruct his talk.
The auditorium run by the Textile Development Trust was to speak about constitutional expectations and challenges. Islam intended to talk about freedom fighters like Bhagat Singh and Ashfaqulla Khan. However, a day before the event, the Trust sent a letter to the organisers cancelling the event.
According to NDTV, the organisers attempted one more time to avail permission for a Friday event but the owner claimed that the same cannot be done due to “unavoidable reasons”. Textile Development Trust Secretary MC Rawat told the TV news channel, in a reported fit of rage ,that it cannot go against the government and “will give his desk if asked to”.
Meanwhile, Islam told SabrangIndia that Congress leader Digvijaya Singh, who was to attend the event spoke to the administration which allegedly demanded that organisers exclude Islam from the event. Islam recently attended a press conference on March 26 to condemn the whole affair.
“What crime have I done? That I oppose the two-nation theory? And even if I am guilty of a crime, how can they suddenly cancel the event, that too on Bhagat Singh’s death anniversary? [March 23] I carry his Urdu documents to show the youth about his work,” said Islam.
The former Delhi University Political Science professor is an author, columnist, dramatist and has been writing against religious bigotry, dehumanisation, totalitarianism, and the persecution of women, Dalits and minorities. Internationally known for his fundamental research work on the rise of nationalism and its development in India and elsewhere, the ex-professor is used to mild forms of aggressions, such as a scuffle at his event where he sang Maulana Hasrat Mohani's song about Lord Krishna.
Regarding the whole affair, Islam said, “Putting aside the Constitution, these people have even flaunted the principles of Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev and Rajguru.”
The news has sparked anger on social media as well.
After professor Filippo Osella’s deportation from Thiruvananthapuram airport two days ago, an Indore auditorium cancels an event by Prof Shamsul Islam, citing government orders. He was travelling across the country to talk about religious harmony. https://t.co/e4sAQPjlmm
— Neyaz Farooquee (@nafsmanzer) March 26, 2022
Academic Freedom in India:
Filippo Osella deported.
DU’s Faculty of Law cancels Prashant Bhushan’s talk.
An event in Indore where Shamsul Islam was scheduled to speak is cancelled citing "govt orders". pic.twitter.com/Z6U2u5asiY
— Charmy Harikrishnan ചാമി ഹരികൃഷ്ണൻ (@charmyh) March 26, 2022
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