Author asked to stop speaking at 43rd Chennai Book Fair

Arumugam Tamilan mentions CAA and NRC


At the Chennai Book Fair taking place from 9 to 21 January 2020, author Arumugam Tamilan was asked to cut short his speech following his references to the new Citizen Amendment Act (CAA) and the National Register of Citizens (NRC) in his speech. Immediately, members of the audience demanded an explanation from the book fair organizers.

 The organizers said that Tamilan was requested to stop speaking as he had overshot his time limit, and the 9 pm is the time for the fair activities to cease. “The police had given till 9 pm for the book fair activities. However, when Tamilan was speaking, it was already around 9:05 to 9:10 pm, which is why he was asked to wrap up. There was no other problem,” said the BAPASI president, RS Shanmugham.

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  1. While book fairs have proliferated across the country, in the past year their role in freedom of expression has expanded. Authors generally try to be relevant and speak to entrenched beliefs. Book fairs are a place to commune with ideas and literate thinking people who are looking to their favourite authors to speak out on issues that concern them. And local authors are almost obliged to articulate their views on the daily attacks not only on rational thinking but also on peaceful freedom of expression.


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