Salman Rushdie stabbed, Live Updates: Rajiv Gandhi’s decision to ban ‘The Satanic Verses’ was justified, says Natwar Singh

That was Salman Rushdie in January 2013, in The Indian Express, where he had dropped by for Idea Exchange, the newsroom’s weekly interaction with newsmakers.

He was referring to his 1988 novel that had set off a series of death threats against him and forced him to live in hiding for nearly a decade following the pronouncement of a fatwa against him by Iran’s religious leader Ayatollah Khomeini.

Details are still sketchy about his condition and the man who attacked him, but according to reports, Rushdie was on stage at the Chautauqua Institution in Chautauqua, New York, when the attack took place. (REUTERS/Brian Snyder)

On Friday, Rushdie, 75, was attacked by an unidentified assailant in Chautauqua, New York, as he waited to deliver a lecture.

On its release, The Satanic Verses was banned in countries around the world for purportedly hurting the religious sentiments of Muslims for its satirical portrayal of the Prophet.

Incidentally, India had been the first country to ban the book.

“The ban was a moment of spinelessness but it wasn’t the only such moment. At the time of the ban, there were no copies available in India,” he said.

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