FaithWorld

Indian publisher withdraws book on Hindus after court case

By Reuters Staff
February 12, 2014

(A Hindu devotee looks on, his face painted with blue powder, before a pilgrimage to the sacred Batu Caves Temple during Thaipusam festival outside Kuala Lumpur January 17, 2014. REUTERS/Samsul Said)

Penguin Books India has agreed to withdraw from sale all copies of a book that takes an unorthodox view of Hinduism, and will pulp them as part of a settlement after a case was filed against the publisher, the petitioners’ lawyer said.

“The Hindus: An Alternative History” by Wendy Doniger, a professor at the University of Chicago’s Divinity School, was published in India in 2011. Its depiction of the religion drew criticism from both conservative Hindus and some scholars.

Penguin on Monday agreed in the Saket Court in Delhi to recall the book, the petitioners’ lawyer Monika Arora said. What appeared to be a copy of the court agreement was widely circulated on the internet on Tuesday. A complaint was filed by seven petitioners’ in the court in 2011.

Penguin did not respond to several requests for comment.

The lead petitioner’s original complaint criticized the book for “heresies and factual inaccuracies” and criticized Doniger for having a selective approach to writing about Hinduism.

“She denounced the Hindu Gods and freedom fighters of India,” the petitioners’ lawyer Arora told Reuters.

Read the full story by Sruthi Gottipati here.

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