Taslima can stay in India, says Govt

The Centre on Wednesday said Bangladeshi writer Taslima Nasreen would continue to get shelter in the country but implied that she should refrain from activities that "hurt sentiments of the people" here.

"Throughout history, we have never refused shelter to those who seek our protection, and the same applies to Nasreen,” External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee told the Lok Sabha.

<b1>But the minister added: "Those given shelter in India have always undertaken to eschew political activities in India or any actions which may harm India’s relations with friendly countries. It is also expected that the guests will refrain from activities and expressions that may hurt the sentiments of our people."

Dissatisfied with the government’s brief statement on the issue, deputy leader of BJP VK Malhotra said many questions about the writer had not found mention in the official response. He and other NDA members sought to know about the whereabouts of the writer, who was shifted to an undisclosed safe house late on Monday night, and about her safety.

Mukherjee’s statement came amid a demand that Taslima be asked to leave the country. "The guests in India are provided protection by the Union and state governments. This policy will also apply to Nasreen’s case,” the minister said.


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