Maha explores legal options to ban Laine`s book on Shivaji

With the Supreme Court lifting the ban on James Laine`s controversial book on Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, the Maharashtra government on Sunday announced setting up of a three-member committee.

Last Updated: Jul 11, 2010, 20:43 PM IST

Mumbai: With the Supreme Court lifting the
ban on James Laine`s controversial book on Chhatrapati Shivaji
Maharaj, the Maharashtra government on Sunday announced setting up of
a three-member committee to explore options to stop its
printing and circulation in the state.

"At no cost, there should be printing and circulation of
the book in the state," Chief Minister Ashok Chavan said
addressing a press conference after the customary session eve
tea party, which was boycotted by the Opposition.

Home Minister R R Patil said the state government would
write to the Centre recommending a stringent Act to stop
defamatory writings against the iconic figure.

The Chief Minister said his government shared the
strong sentiments of the people of the state over the
objectionable references made to the legendary Maratha King in
the book.

"Since, the apex court has given its verdict of lifting
of the ban, the state has decided to proceed legally in this
matter. The committee comprising Advocate General, Law
Secretary and Additional Chief Secretary (ACS), Home will
explore legal options and advise the government accordingly,"
Chavan said.

Patil said the committee will give its views on the
matter in two days. "The Centre has to enact such a
legislation. The state government would write to the Centre
recommending a stringent act," he added.

On whether action will be taken against historians in
the state, especially in Pune, for providing defamatory
information about Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, Patil said
police had questioned the historians mentioned in the book by
Laine and all of them had categorically denied that they had
provided any such information.

PTI