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Author Salman Rushdie attacked on stage at New York event Salman Rushdie
Image: Wikimedia Commons

Author Salman Rushdie attacked on stage at New York event

India Blooms News Service | @indiablooms | 12 Aug 2022, 09:36 pm

New York/IBNS: Author Salman Rushdie was attacked at an event in the US city of New York on Friday just as he was about to give a lecture, media reports said.

The author's writing led to death threats from Iran in the late 1980s.

According to an Associated Press reporter, who witnessed the incident, a man stormed into the stage at the Chautauqua Institution and began punching or stabbing Rushdie as he was being introduced.

Image credit: Twitter Image credit: Twitter

The author was taken or fell to the floor, and the man was restrained, said the reports.

The New York State Police confirmed the stabbing and said he was taken to an area hospital by helicopter. The attacker is currently in custody, police told the media.

New York State Governor Kathy Hochul later said he is alive and "getting the care he needs". 

author Taslima Nasreen, who has been living in exile for nearly three decades after her book "Lajja" received severe criticism in Bangladesh.

Social media posts showed people rushing to his aid on stage at Chautauqua Institution, about 100 km from the city. the moderator of the talk suffered minor head injuries in the attack. 

Rushdie’s book “The Satanic Verses” has been banned in Iran since 1988, as many Muslims consider it to be blasphemous.

A year later, Iran’s late leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini issued a fatwa calling for Rushdie’s death.

Delhi-based British writer William Dalrymple was among the first to react, hoping that Mr Rushdie wasn't hurt. "A terrible day for literature, for freedom of speech and for authors everywhere. Poor poor Salman: I pray he's not hurt and recovers quickly," he tweeted.

Author JK Rowling also called it a "Horrifying news."

Britain's PM Boris Johnson tweeted, "Appalled that Sir Salman Rushdie has been stabbed while exercising a right we should never cease to defend. Right now my thoughts are with his loved ones. We are all hoping he is okay." Delhi-based British writer William Dalrymple was among the first to react, hoping that Mr Rushdie wasn't hurt."

Author Taslima Nasreen, who has been living in exile for nearly three decades after her book "Lajja" received severe criticism in Bangladesh, tweeted: "I just learned that Salman Rushdie was attacked in New York. I am really shocked. I never thought it would happen. He has been living in the West, and he has been protected since 1989. If he is attacked, anyone who is critical of Islam can be attacked. I am worried."

Indian lyricist Javed Akhtar condemned the attack on Salman Rushdie and urged the police to take strict action against the attacker. "I condemn the barbaric attack on Salman Rushdie  by some fanatic. I hope that NY police and the court will take the strongest action possible against the attacker," he tweeted.