Sahitya Akademi must ensure moral policing is curbed: writer

Panaji, Oct 18 (IANS) The Sahitya Akademi should urge the government to ensure stringent measures to curb moral policing by “protagonists of mono-culturism”, Goan Sahitya Akademi award-winner Damodar Mauzo has said.

Mauzo said this in a letter to Sahitya Akademi president V.P. Tiwari while calling for a strong condemnation of Kannada writer M.M. Kalburgi’s murder in August.

Mauzo, who along with 11 Sahitya Akademi award winning writers from Goa, publicly protested Tiwari’s silence following the killing of Kalburgi, a member of the Akademi’s governing council.

“We should also urge the government to adopt stringent measures to curb the moral policing by the protagonists of mono-culturism who are emboldened by the mute stand taken by the law and order keepers,” Mauzo said in his letter, a copy of which was accessed by IANS.

“It is the duty of the Akademi to safeguard the interests of the writers’ community and ensure safety to the lives of its members. A strong message has to go to those in power that this writers’ body will not tolerate any threat to their freedom,” he said.

Mauzo, the 1983 Sahitya Akademi award winner for his novel ‘Karmelin’, said following Kalburgi’s murder, literary organisation had failed to act.

“I sincerely feel following the assassination of Kalburgi, Sahitya Akademi should either have come out with a strong condemnation over the killing or should have convened an emergency EB (executive board) meeting to assess the situation wherein the life of writers is threatened by the fundamentalist forces,” he said.

As a body of eminent writers, the Akademi “cannot remain silent on the issues pertaining to the scuttling of freedom of expression”, Mauzo added

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