New York, 13th August 2022: India-born Booker Prize winning novelist Salman Rushdie was stabbed in the neck and stomach by a 24-year-old man. The incident happened when he was about to deliver a lecture at the Chautauqua Institution in western New York.
On the other hand, the motive of the attacker has not been clearly revealed yet. Rushdie has been receiving death threats from Muslim countries especially Iran since the publication of his novel ‘The Satanic Verses’.
Salman Rushdie is still on ventilator and doctors are doing their best to save him. Many Muslims raised their voice against his novel. Through this book he was accused of blasphemy. After this Iran imposed sanctions on him. Even the then Supreme Leader of Iran Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini issued a death decree or fatwa in 1989.
Reward on Rushdie eight years after Khomeini called on all Muslims to kill Rushdie, the state-affiliated Iranian Religious Foundation has increased the reward to $2.5 million. Over the years, the bounty has been increased to $3.9 million.
In 1998, a radical Iranian student group announced a reward of one billion riyals (then $333,000) for Rushdie’s head.
After the Fatwa in 1991, a Japanese translator of the novel was stabbed to death in Tokyo. An Italian translator survived a knife attack in his Milan flat that same year by a man who said he was Iranian. In 1993, the Norwegian publisher of the book was shot three times, but survived. At least 45 people have been killed in several attacks over the book.
Rushdie, who had been hiding for years went into hiding with police protection round the clock after receiving death threats. His first pre-announced public appearance came six years after he began living in safe homes since the fatwa was issued.
In February 1989, Muslim protesters in Mumbai marched towards the British High Commission in protest against the author Rushdie. The police opened fire on the crowd in which 12 died.
Almost 10 years after this incident, the Indian government granted the novelist a visa to visit, following which the Muslim community started protesting. In 2012, he had to cancel his plans to attend a major literary festival in Jaipur due to protests from some Muslim groups.
Satanic Verses, which was banned in India too, was banned in dozens of countries including India months after its release. Former Union minister and diplomat Natwar Singh defended the Rajiv Gandhi-led government’s decision to ban the book, telling PTI that it was done “purely for law and order reasons”.