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Salman Rushdie Attacked On Stage At New York Event

Salman Rushdie on the ground after the New York attack just as he was due to give a lecture.

New York:

Author Salman Rushdie was attacked Friday at an event in New York, US, just as he was about to give a lecture, news agencies reported. While details were scarce, the author’s writings have led to death threats in the past.

The Associated Press said its reporter witnessed a man storm the stage at Chautauqua Institution; he hit or stabbed Mr Rushdie when he was introduced. The author fell to the ground and the man was detained, PTI news agency said.

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Mr Rushdie, 75, was particularly threatened in the late 1980s with his book, The Devil’s Verses, which has been banned in Iran since 1988 on the grounds that it is blasphemous against Islam. There was also a reward on his head by the top Iranian leader, although by 1998 the Iranian government said it was not trying to enforce that “fatwa” or that edict.

Mr Rushdie, a British citizen of Indian descent, has lived in the US for the past 20 years.

His first novel came out in 1975, but one of his seminal works is about modern India, Midnight kids (1981). After the controversy over his fourth book, The Devil’s Verses (1988), he remained out of the public eye.

Despite the threats, he produced several novels in the 1990s. In 2007, he was knighted – given the ceremonial title ‘Sir’ – by Queen Elizabeth II for services to literature.

He has produced more than a dozen works, including non-fiction.

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