‘May Disturb Communal Harmony’: Court Stays Distribution, Sale of Book on Tipu Sultan

A petition seeking the ban claimed that the book contains wrong information on Tipu Sultan without any support or justification from history.

New Delhi: A Bengaluru court has granted an interim stay on the distribution and sale of a book on Tipu Sultan after hearing a plea which said it contained “wrong information” about the ruler of the erstwhile Mysuru Kingdom.

The court on Tuesday, November 22, issued the temporary injunction restraining the author, publisher Ayodhya Publication and printer Rashtrotthana Mudranalaya from distributing and selling the book titled Tipu Nija Kanasugalu (Real Dreams of Tipu).

Tipu Nija Kanasugalu (Real Dreams of Tipu) by Addanda C. Cariappa. (Ayodhya Publication, October 10, 2022)

It’s written by Addanda C. Cariappa, the director of Karnataka’s most coveted theatre repertoire, Rangayana, in the Kannada language.

A plea was filed by the former chairman of the District Wakf Board Committee, B.S. Rafiulla, claiming that the book contains wrong information on Tipu Sultan without any support or justification from history.

“‘Azaan’, which is the religious practice of the Muslim community, is extracted in the book wrongly in order to hurt the feelings of the Muslim community,” the plaintiff told the court, according to LiveLaw.

He also submitted that the word turukaru, used in the book, is a derogatory term for the Muslim community. He contended that the publication of the book would cause unrest and communal disharmony, disturbing the public peace at large.

Also read: Understanding Tipu Sultan, Warrior and Dreamer

However, the author has claimed that the play is based on “true history” and what is written in history books and is taught through school textbooks is false.

The court after perusing the book containing the play said, “The reading of the foreword and the preface of the book shows that the writer of the foreword and the author of the play in the preface claim that it is based on truth and precision of the history… It is also claimed that it is based on research and is published with an intention to unveil the true nature of Tipu Sultan.”

“The plaintiff has claimed that the contents of the play are false and do not contain true facts,” the court said.

According to the news agency PTI, it said, “If the contents of the play are false and it contains false information about Tipu Sultan, and if the same are distributed, it would cause irreparable loss to the plaintiff and there are chances of breach of communal peace and harmony and there is a danger to the public peace.”

“If the book is circulated pending appearance of the defendants, the purpose of the application itself would be defeated. It is common knowledge that controversial books sell like hot cakes. Therefore, at this stage, the balance of convenience is in favour of the plaintiff in granting the order of injunction,” the judge observed.

However, the court said it cannot grant the injunction to stop the play.

“There is no apprehension that the play would be arranged within the jurisdiction of this court. Hence, no order of ex parte temporary injunction to stop the play is granted in this order,” it said, as per the LiveLaw report.

The court issued a notice on the application and summons to the defendant and posted the matter for hearing on December 3.