KOZHIKODE: Following threats from right-wing groups, Malayalam litterateur S Hareesh has withdrawn his novel ‘Meesha’. The novel, which was being published in serial form in the ‘Mathrubhumi’ weekly, angered the ‘critics’ for certain controversial remarks contained in it.
According to Hareesh, he is withdrawing the novel as a result of the threats to his family and himself. “I am not interested in wasting away my life, tackling cases and dealing with threats. I am not ready to fight with those ruling the country. The novel’s narrative had been in my mind since childhood. The final product is the result of a five-year long toil,” he said.
The weekly’s assistant editor Kamalram Sajeev said Hareesh was forced to withdraw his work in a state which idolises writers like Perumal Murugan. “When the writer faced such threats, he did not receive any backing from society,” Sajeev said.
Sajeev said Hareesh has informed him if society’s sensibility changes in the coming days, his work will be published as a tome.
He said the author expressed his inability to endure the social media campaign against his wife and child.
‘Meesha’ is a throwback to the social scenario which existed in the state half-a-century ago. The right-wing activists took exception to the conversation between two of the novel’s protagonists about allowing women into temples.
Earlier, in the wake of mounting threats, Hareesh, who lapsed into depression, deactivated his Facebook account and shut himself off from the outside world, according to the sources close to him.
Besides the cyber attack on the writer, the publishing house was at the receiving end of the right-wing groups’ fury. Incensed by the novel’s contents, the detractors took out a march to the Mathrubhumi’ weekly’s office here. They also disrupted a programme organised by the publishing house in Kochi.