Author Taslima Nasreen points out “regressive position” of CPI(M)’s coalition partner Abbas Siddiqui

She took to Twitter to write about Siddiqui's politics & beliefs

Bangladeshi-Swedish author and activist Taslima Nasreen has pointed out the regressive position of the Indian Secular Force (ISF), coalition partner of the Communist Party of India (Marxist).

Nasreen, who describes herself as “Author, Secular Humanist, Feminist, Physician” on her Twitter account, in her tweet, wrote: “Abbas Siddiqui, the coalition partner of CPM in West Bengal believes in Sharia laws. He supported the killing of French teacher Samuel Paty. Does he believe in women’s equality? No. In free speech? Nope. Does he believe in science? Of course not.”

The ISF was floated by an influential cleric of the religious shrine Furfura Sharif, Abbas Siddiqui just over a month ago. Among some of Siddiqui’s controversial comments were one against Trinamool Congress’ Basirhat MP actor-politician Nusrat Jahan, who he said earned by “showing her body”.

The Left Front leaders – the CPI(M) leaders in particular – have been saying in recent times that Siddiqui is not communal, pointing out that the name of his party consists of the word “Secular”. He was part of the Brigade Parade Ground rally yesterday organised by the Left Front, in which the Congress leaders were also present. The Left Front, Congress and the ISF have formed an alliance ahead of the 2021 Assembly elections in West Bengal that will take place from March 27 to April 29.

The Bangladeshi author has been living in exile since 1994 following threats by Muslim fundamentalists. After staying in Europe, she came to India in 2004 and lived in Kolkata till 2007. At that point, she was asked to leave the state following violent protests by Muslims against her writings. She then moved to Sweden, and later returned to India. She has often expressed her wish to return to Kolkata.

In an earlier interview (in 2017), Nasreen had said that she found the Mamata Banerjee government in West Bengal “harsher” than the former Left Front government. She had said that “Politicians are all on the same platform when it comes down to me. I think it’s because they think that if they can satisfy the Muslim fundamentalists they will get votes. I believe I am a victim of vote bank politics. This also shows that how weak the democracy is and politicians ask votes by banning a writer.” She said that she had not been allowed to enter the state though she had written to the government.

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