The Jharkhand Government on Friday banned the sale of Santhali novelist and government doctor, Dr Hansda Sowvendra Shekhar’s book, The Adivasi Will Not Dance, as it allegedly hurts the dignity of Santhal tribal women. The authorities also sent out an official statement claiming that legal action would be initiated against the author.
Jharkhand Chief Minister Raghubar Das directed Chief Secretary Rajbala Verma to seize all the copies of the book and initiate legal action against the author. On Friday morning, the issue was discussed in the Parliament, following which the book was banned.
This comes in the wake of a protest by some tribal groups in Jharkhand’s Pakur, where Hansda is deputed in the Additional Public Health Centre of Pakuria block. According to a news report in a Hindi daily, one of the chapters in the book talks about a Santhali woman agreeing to go to bed with a man in exchange for food, The Indian Express reported.
The official government release said that the action was taken after a report on the book was published in a newspaper. Shekhar, a doctor by profession, is the winner of a Sahitya Akademi Yuva award and his book that is facing heat was published in November 2015.
According to reports, a woman from Dumka, now working in Delhi, had initiated an online petition campaign, seeking the withdrawal of Hansda’s Sahitya Akademi award, which he received in 2015.
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