Delhi: Pak-origin writer Tarek Fatah faces protests at Urdu fest Jashn-e-Rekhta
Canadian writer of Pakistani origin and television personality Tarek Fatah got into a verbal argument with other attendees at the Jashn-e-Rekhta festival in Delhi on Sunday.
Fatah was at the Indira Gandhi National Centre of Arts, the venue of the event, shooting with his video crew when a group of attendees cornered him and began shouting slogans against him. The group asked Fatah to leave the venue and while replying to them, he entered into a fracas.
When attempts by volunteers to resolve the altercation failed, the police came in and provided him security cover. Fatah was then taken out of the venue.
An eyewitness said attempts by volunteers to pacify the situation failed as the protesting group became aggressive.
One of the visitors, Parvez Alam, who was allegedly leading the protest against Fatah, was detained and taken to the Parliament Street police station.
“Tarek Fatah, a Pakistani, who keeps spewing venom against Indian Muslims, is a threat to the social fabric and communal harmony of our country. He is an outsider and why should his anti-India and anti-Muslim views be given so much footage?” Alam, a resident of Zakir Nagar said.
Alam said the police detained him for two hours and later let him go. The organisers of the event distanced themselves from the incident.
“We did not invite Fatah. More than one lakh visitors have come for the event so far. We do send invites to a few distinguished people. But Fatah was not on our guest list and no invite was sent to him,” said Prof. Aneesur Rahman, special advisor to Rekhta Foundation.