While the Award Wapsi Winter 2019 was kickstarted by Urdu writer Mujtaba Hussain offering to return his Padma Shree because his “conscience was pricking him” during following the passing of Citizenship Amendment Act, Congress MP Shashi Tharoor is going to actually defy the ground rules of award acceptance by Opposition when Modi government is in power by actually accepting the Sahitya Akademi Award which was conferred to him last night.
Tharoor won the award for his ‘non-fiction’ book An Era of Darkness and amidst speculation whether he will accept or not in the ongoing anti-CAA agitation, Tharoor took to Twitter to explain how Sahitya Akademi does not fall under the amit of Union Government and hence, he shall gladly accept it.
— Shashi Tharoor (@ShashiTharoor) December 18, 2019
He said how Sahitya Akademi is not a body nominated by the union government, the question whether he will accept it or not does not arise. Amusingly, Nayantara Sehgal, Jawaharlal Nehru’s niece, had returned her Sahitya Akademi award because of ‘rising intolerance’ following the death of Mohammad Akhlaq in Uttar Pradesh’s Dadri. Sehgal was also hailed for her step and speaking truth to power. However, with Tharoor’s clarification on his acceptance of Sahitya Akademi award, one wonders whether Nehru’s niece’s award was returned in vain.