Naqvi defends Govt., says ‘politics and literature’ must not be mixed

New Delhi: Minister of State for Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi on Tuesday asked the literary icons, who have returned their Sahitya Akademi awards over ‘growing intolerance’, not to blame the government for their cause and said that ‘politics and literature’ must not be mixed.

“We respect our writers, after all they bring laurels and honour to the nation and of course we support them and their concerns, but it’s unfortunate that they are blaming the government, no matter who is responsible when something terrible happens,” Naqvi told ANI here.

“It’s good to keep literature and politics separate as it is not only good for them, but for the nation. But if they get mixed up, the respect towards these writers takes a hit,” he added.

In his message to the protesting writers, Naqvi said that ‘brotherhood, cooperation and unity’ are the best weapons to fight against communal violence.

Several authors, including Nayantara Sahgal, Sara Joseph, Uday Prakash and Ashok Vajpeyi, have returned their Sahitya Akademi awards and others like poet Satchidanan and Keki Daruwalla have protested against the government’s ‘silence’ over the killing of writer MM Kalburgi and the ‘rising intolerance’ in the country.