We earlier published a letter by Mr. Girish Karnad on IndiaResists.com, which was meant to be a personal email that he had sent to his friends and acquaintances. With our sincere apologies, we are publishing his formal letter to the Editor of The Hindu which has recently been published:
On 5 July, at an event organized for the Chitra Film Society in Dharwad by its secretary, Abdul Khan, I was asked how I reacted to having Modi as the Prime Minister, given my earlier criticism of him. I replied that since the BJP had come to power through a constitutional process, one had to accept the verdict, and not be in a hurry to begin criticising it.
The Hindu correctly reported the event, quoting me as saying, ‘It would be too early to say anything about the style of functioning of the Modi government… Let us give him time.’ Another English language paper / The Times of India, however, carried a report and added words of approbation that I did not use. I am used to misquotations and tweakings in Indian reporting, and at first this seemed fairly innocuous.
I was however troubled when I heard that the story, discreetly consigned to a corner of the Bangalore edition, had been projected differently in other editions of the concerned paper. In other editions, besides attributing to me words I never spoke, the front-page story was accompanied by a file photograph, totally unrelated to the Dharwad event, of me wearing a saffron teeka on my forehead.
I was amazed that a paper of national standing should so stoop to such manipulation.
I am writing this letter to thank you for reporting my comments fairly, and in the hope that you will help me clarify my position. Let me add that I am totally irreligious and wear a teeka only at weddings and festivals, or while acting in films.