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Karni Sena threatens Javed Akhtar

MUMBAI: The Rajasthan-based Rajput Karni Sena, a fringe workforce, has now threatened lyricist Javed Akhtar with violence. Akhtar had stated the practice of ghoonghat in Rajasthan will have to even be outlawed if voices like 'Saamna' have been difficult a selective ban on the burqa.

Akhtar stated in Bhopal on Thursday, "If you want to bring a law banning burqa here and if it is someone's view I have no objection. But before the last phase of election in Rajasthan, this government should announce a ban on the practice of ghoonghat in that state. I feel that ghoonghat should go and the burqa should go. I will be happy."

Jivan Singh Solanki, president of the Maharashtra wing of the Karni Sena advised TOI, "The burqa is associated with terrorism and (is a question of) national security. We have asked Akhtar to render an apology within three days or face the consequences." Solanki despatched this paper a video recording in which he warns Akhtar, "We will gouge out your eyes and pull out your tongue if you don't apologise. We will enter your house and beat you."

Karni Sena had earlier led year-long violent agitations in opposition to Sanjay Bhansali's film 'Padmaavat' ahead of in spite of everything "approving" the film. Earlier this yr, it had threatened the makers of 'Manikarnika' as neatly.

Akhtar tweeted on Friday, "Some people are trying to distort my statement. I have said that maybe in Sri Lanka it (the ban) is done for security reasons but actually it is required for women empowerment. Covering the face should be stopped whether naqab or ghoonghat."

A slew of right-wing components started criticising his remark to which he spoke back, "The question is not only of our security but the dignity and empowerment of women. Can a woman in a burqa or ghoonghat be a pilot, sportsperson, journalist, political leader. I believe both the restrictions on women are undesirable. It doesn’t matter whether it is a law or tradition. Subjugation of women should not be acceptable at any cost in any form anywhere."

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