MUMBAI: Countering the reasons stated by author Salman Rushdie, for cancelling his visit to the Jaipur literary festival, Mumbai police has denied having any information about paid assassins or underworld threat to the author. Author Salman Rushdie, in a statement read out at the Jaipur Literature Festival said that he had been told by intelligence sources in Maharashtra and Rajasthan that ‘paid assassins’ from the Mumbai underworld may be on their way to Jaipur to eliminate him.
The celebrated/banned author was invited to be a part of the jaipur literature festival, which he attend in 2008 as well, this year however his invitation came with mixed feelings of welcome and caution. while no one is ready to take responsibility of being the ones who warned him against coming.
“We do not have any information suggesting that underworld is planning to harm Rushdie,” Deputy Police Commissioner (Crime) Nisar Tamboli said. He refused to comment further regarding any security threats to Mr Rushdie or the Jaipur literary festival. Author of the banned novel “The Satanic Verses” tweeted on his micro blogging site- “Very sad not to be at Jaipur. I was told Bombay mafia don issued weapons to 2 hit men to “eliminate” me. Will do video link instead. Damn.”
Rushdie’s written statement did not clarify on the source of the information but cited the threat as the main reason for not coming. “While I have some doubts about the accuracy of this intelligence, it would be irresponsible of me to come to the festival in such circumstances; irresponsible to my family, to the festival audience and to my fellow writers.”