Even as the Orissa High Court is adjudicating over a petition on “malicious” publication of a biography on Sri Aurobindo, a lower court here after taking cognizance of a complaint case has summoned the author of the controversial book.
Charge of defamation
The Cuttack Sadar SDJM court last week had issued summons to writer of the book Peter Heehs asking him to appear in the court on February 20. Alleging that the biography contains defamatory and perverse comments on Sri Aurobindo’s character, life, writings and thoughts, the petitioner Deviprasad Das has sought action against the writer under charges of defamation.
It may be recalled here that a Balasore-based woman Gitanjali Bhattacharya has moved the HC seeking ban on the book.
In her petition she has alleged that the writer in her book has mentioned that Sri Aurobindo was morally loose in character and did not hold integrity as a person.
Adjudicating over the petition, the HC had issued notices to both Orissa and Central governments, the writer and to the managing director of Penguin Books.
The book titled ‘The Life of Sri Aurobindo’ was first published by US-based Columbia Press. In India, the Penguin Books had announced to publish the book in November 2008. Copyright © 2008, The Hindu. Republication or redissemination of the contents of this screen are expressly prohibited without the written consent of The Hindu 8:53 AM