Inclusion of Rushdie books spark protests at Pak uni
Islamabad: A Pakistani university`s move to include Indian-born controversial author Salman Rushdie`s two famous books `Midnight`s Children` and `Shame` in additional courses for MPhil and PhD has drawn the ire of students and teachers.
Protests have been planned at the University of Peshawar`s campus and elsewhere in the northwestern Pakistani city, which is the capital of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province, following the inclusion of the books by the Department of English and Applied Linguistics.
The department`s faculty board had approved Rushdie`s `Midnight`s Children` and `Shame` as additional courses for MPhil and PhD.
A proposal was submitted to the dean of the faculty of arts and humanities for approval by the Academic Council of the university, a newspaper reported on Saturday.
The Academic Council, which met recently with the acting Vice-Chancellor Qibla Ayaz in the chair, approved the proposal "without even discussing it," the report said.
It further said that the students planned the protests as they considered Rushdie a "notorious blasphemer".
A member of the Academic Council expressed ignorance about the matter. He said that the Academic Council had met after three years and the body had a lot of things to do.
"We could do nothing but approve each and everything. This also must have been approved without discussion," the unnamed official told the daily.
Earlier this year, cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan decided not to attend an event in India after learning that Rushdie would be present too.
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