'Offending pictures' of Shiva, Kali: FIR lodged against magazine, economist Bibek Debroy quits as columnist

Bajrang Dal workers sought action against the editors of the magazine brought out in English by the Malayala Manorama group

'Offending pictures' of Shiva, Kali: FIR lodged against magazine, economist Bibek Debroy quits as columnist

Bibek Debroy, Chairman, Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister. PTI File

PTI

Kanpur (UP), August 5

Police here have lodged an FIR against ‘The Week’ amid a row over “objectionable pictures” of Lord Shiva and Goddess Kali that has led Hindu activists to burn copies of the magazine and economist Bibek Debroy end his association with it.

Kanpur's Kotwali police registered the case against the editor and management of the magazine following a complaint Thursday by former BJP state vice-president Prakash Sharma, who accused them of hurting religious feelings.

Bajrang Dal workers burnt copies of the magazine at the city’s Bada Chauraha on Friday, seeking action against the editors of the magazine brought out in English by the Malayala Manorama group.

Bibek Debroy, who heads the Economic Advisory Council to Prime Minister, on Thursday ended his association with the publication as a columnist over a picture of the goddess Kali tagged to his article in the July 24 edition.

This is the second controversy in recent weeks over the depiction of the goddess. Last month, Canada-based filmmaker Leena Manimekalai shared a poster of her documentary that showed a woman dressed as Kali smoking a cigarette.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (East) Pramod Kumar said a case under 295A of the Indian Penal Code has been registered in Kanpur. The section deals with “deliberate malicious acts” intended to outrage religious feelings.

The DCP said instructions have been issued to the investigation officer to probe the charges and take appropriate action.

BJP leader Prakash Sharma said the pictures published by the magazine have outraged Hindu sentiments. The editor and others responsible for this objectionable act should be dealt with an iron hand, he told PTI.

Sharma said he found an objectionable article and pictures on pages 62 and 63 of the magazine.

Earlier, in his letter to The Week editor Philip Mathew, Debroy said he is ending his association with the magazine over the illustration that accompanied his column on Kali.

 “The picture was deliberately chosen to titillate and provoke. At least, that's the way I perceive it,” he said in the letter he also posted on Twitter.  

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