Gujarat Sahitya Academy chairman Vishnu Pandya has criticised a poem by Gujarati poetess Parul Khakhar on our bodies floating within the Ganga river that criticised the Centre’s dealing with of the COVID-19 pandemic, saying that the work is being misused by “liberals, communists and literary Naxals” to unfold “anarchy” within the nation.
While a number of writers have prolonged their help to Ms Khakhar and criticised Mr Pandya for his stand, the chief of the Academy, a state government-controlled physique, remained agency on his views, saying the poem targets Prime Minister Narendra Modi and “defames” Indian individuals, democracy and society.
Ms Khakhar’s poem “Shab-Vahini Ganga” (corpse-carrying Ganga) criticises the Centre over its dealing with of the pandemic by making a reference in regards to the our bodies of COVID-19 victims floating within the river Ganga in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar on the peak of the second wave.
The poem grew to become an instantaneous hit and was translated into totally different languages and shared broadly on social media platforms.
In an editorial within the June version of the Academy’s official publication “Shabdashrushti”, Mr Pandya has criticised the poem with out particularly naming it.
The article was titled “No, this is not a poem, it is a misuse of a poem for anarchy”.
“Many have praised this poem. But this piece cannot be considered a poem at all. That was just pointless anger, a jugglery of words, defaming Indian people, democracy and society. How can you call this a poem?” Mr Pandya wrote.
He additional identified that the poem has been misused by people who find themselves anti-Centre and are in opposition to its nationalist ideologies.
The poem has been used as a “shoulder to fire from” by these components, he stated.
“Communists and those so-called liberals want to create anarchy in the country. They are active in all fields and also jumped into literature with malicious intentions. These literary Naxals want to influence those unsuspecting people who would relate their personal grief with this poem,” Mr Pandya said.
He additional stated the Academy can by no means agree with what has been written within the poem, and stated some components had turned the work right into a “weapon to tear apart the social fabric”.
While Ms Khakhar was not obtainable for remark, over 100 Gujarati writers, led by Manishi Jani of Gujarati Lekhak Mandal, got here out in help of the poetess, who can also be being focused by means of social media.
In a press release, Ms Jani stated Gujarati writers “condemn the attempts to muzzle the voice of a writer and stand firmly in support of a Parul Khakhar”.
In his defence, Mr Pandya stated he was by no means in opposition to Ms Khakhar and the Academy even supported her financially prior to now for her literary works.
“Parul is a good poetess. But this poem does not fit in the literary standards. Her piece only reflects prejudice against Prime Minister Narendra Modi. One must refrain from using derogatory words like ”naked king” in a poem,” Mr Pandya stated.
“I can never agree with the idea of misusing a poem to create anarchy in the country. Criticism of the establishment must be there. Even we used to criticise governments. But there must be a balance in it,” he added.
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