PENGUIN BURNT THEIR FINGERS BY HURTING HINDUS
By Brigadier Chitranjan Sawant,VSM
It happens but once in a blue moon. The reputed international publisher, PENGUIN commissioned and published a book entitled THE HINDU -An Alternative History and it hit roadblock after roadblock from day one. There were massive protests and what killed the goose was a case filed in a court of law against the author and the publisher for hurting the sentiments of the Hindus in particular and all Indians in general.
The plaintiffs pointed out and proved successfully that the author knew nothing about the Hindy dharma. She misinterpreted the Ved mantras, the folklore and the religious texts of sects and sub-sects to the extent of denigrating gods, goddesses and followers. The Penguin had to cut a sorry figure because their editors had goofed and edited the book in a state of stupor.
The Hindu turned out to be a work of Fiction far removed from history or metaphysics. It did not touch the Dharma of the Hindus even with a barge pole. The author showed little understanding of the true faith of the Hindus. She did not have even the remotest acquintence with the Vedas. She borrowed an iota of truth from one place and mixed it with her Fiction, a sheer product of her sick mind.
Consequently the product of her labour was neither fish nor fowl.
The book annoyed the large community of the Hindus to such an extent that the Penguin feared a terrible backlash. The publishers cowered and submitted to the demand of the Hindu community that the book be withdrawn from the market immediately and the residual copies on the shelf of publishers be destroyed forthwith. Thus the said book became a non-existent piece of fiction badly conceived and poorly written for the readers in India that is Bharat. The plaintiffs had this court-backed settlement and went home satisfied with their achievement.
Wendy was kept posted with the latest happenings and she had little choice but to acquiesce. Penguin, the major player in the game had to eat the humble pie for their own doings that amounted to dereliction of duty on the part of the editors and supervisors.
Of course, some pseudo-secularists and leftist elements in the writer community beat their chest and tore their hair for the court’s wrong doing in pronouncing a judgement that pleased the hearts of the Hindus. For the chest beaters it was a case of too little and too late. They got a little publicity in a section of the left-leaning media but suffered the ignominity of being ignored.
The moral of the story is: hurting the religious sentiments of the Hindus is like playing with fire. Everyone knows Fire Burns.