Hours after Bombay-born novelist Salman Rushdie was attacked, K Natwar Singh, who was a Union minister in the Rajiv Gandhi government that banned Rushdie’s controversial book The Satanic Verses, strongly defended the decision on Saturday asserting it was taken “purely” for law and order reasons. Meanwhile, a physician who was among those who rushed to help Rushdie after he was stabbed at a New York state book event told the news agency AP that the author’s wounds are “serious but recoverable.”
Rushdie, who spent years in hiding after Iran urged Muslims to kill him because of his writing, was stabbed in the neck and torso onstage at a lecture and is likely to lose an eye in the attack. His agent said that the nerves in the 75-year-old Rushdie’s arm were severed and the author’s liver was stabbed and damaged.” Police have taken into custody 24-year-old Hadi Matar for allegedly committing the crime.
Born into a Muslim Kashmiri family in Bombay, Rushdie moved to the UK. He has long faced death threats for his fourth novel, ‘The Satanic Verses,’ most prominently from Iran’s powerful cleric and leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini who had pronounced a fatwa calling upon Muslims to kill the novelist.