Navayana, a Delhi based publishing firm, said it will not sell books to those who vote for Narendra Modi in the ongoing general elections.
“Our customers will have to first sign a declaration,” S. Anand, publisher, said.
“It will be both appalling and disturbing if we sell our books to people vote for a fascist like Modi. There cannot be a place for such customers in a publishing house like Navayana,” he said.
This comes days after Navayana deciding to ‘pulp’ a translated work of fiction as soon as it found that the original author endorsed Modi; and weeks after Penguin, another publishing house, pulping Wendy Doniger’s book on Hinduism.
Navayana, which is focussed on caste issues, has published B.R. Ambedkar, Namdeo Dhasal, Slavoj Zizek, Kancha Ilaiah, Anand Teltumbde, Angela Davis, and Gail Omvedt among others. “Since 2009 Navayana decided to broad-base its publishing programme, for the struggle against caste cannot happen in isolation,” Navayana said.
This stand has led it to take controversial decisions. Recently, it asked one of its senior editors to vomit after he confessed he consumed vegetarian food – and not beef. “We clearly stated, even in our recruitment ad, that we wanted a beefeater for editor, and recruited him solely for that reason,” Anand said.
The editor, Arif Ayaz Parrey, said he didn’t mind the act of puking itself, but the methodology. “I wanted to induce vomit by drinking heavily-salted warm water. But Navayana was against it, because it said salt symbolised Gandhian way. So I had to use my finger.”