Statement from the organisers of Harud – The Autumn Literature Festival
We wish to categorically state that the Harud literature festival is not government sponsored. It has been conceived with the intent of creating a platform for free and open, debate, discussion and dialogue through contemporary narratives, literary fiction, poetry and theatre.
The festival aims at showcasing writing in Urdu, Kashmiri, Dogri and English from the region and other parts of India.
False and provocative rumours of Salman Rushdie attending the festival have been circulated Via a dedicated facebook book page without seeking any clarification about the authenticity of this statement. We wish to reiterate that Salman Rushdie was never invited to attend the festival.
We are surprised that some people who profess to stand for free speech have hijacked this sincere effort to create a transparent and inclusive platform for the arts and saddened that a literary initiative should become a point for confrontation.
We seek support for the spirit of the festival which is plural, inclusive and aims to be a platform for free speech and expression.