Advocate hurls ink on Kannada writer and rationalist K.S. Bhagawan, whose book ‘Why Ram Mandir is not Needed’ was recently banned from public libraries in Karnataka

Published : February 04, 2021 21:05 IST

K.S. Bhagawan at a national seminar on rationalism in Kochi in 2019. Photo: Thulasi Kakkat

In a shocking incident that took place today, an advocate hurled black ink on the face of writer and rationalist K.S. Bhagaan outside the Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Court (ACMC) in Bengaluru. The 75-year-old Mysuru-based writer is an outspoken critic of Hindutva and was provided police protection after the murder of M.M. Kalburgi in 2015 when it was revealed that he was on the infamous hit list of Hindu right-wing terrorists.

The advocate who hurled the ink has been identified as Meera Raghavendra. It was not difficult to identify her as she proudly took credit for the act. Sharing a video of the incident on Twitter, she wrote: “When intellectual and Anti-Hindu Prof. Bhagawan appeared in court today to apply for bail, I hurled ink at him and instantly took revenge”. In the video, she can be heard screaming that she was “ready for anything” and was even ready to go to jail. According to reliable sources, Bhagawan has filed a complaint with the Halasuru Gate police station in the city.

Bhagawan has been a fearless critic of Hindutva. Recently, his Kannada book Rama Mandira Yeke Beda (Why Ram Mandir is not Needed) was banned from public libraries in Karnataka. At the time of banning the book, Education Minister S. Suresh Kumar had stated: “The book may hurt public sentiments and I will not encourage this kind of book in public libraries.”

Bhagawan is a well-known Kannada litterateur based in Mysuru. He taught English at the University of Mysore for 37 years before retiring in 2005 and is known for his translations of William Shakespeare’s plays into Kannada. He is the author of over 40 books on literature and social issues and is the recipient of the Karnataka Rajyotsava and Karnataka Sahitya Academy Awards among others. As a rationalist, he has often criticised aspects of Hinduism, making him a consistent target of the Hindu right-wing.

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