The Centre has asked Urdu authors affiliated with NCPUL (National Council for Promotion of Urdu) to refrain from producing content “against national interest” or that which creates hatred among communities. A media report
suggests the NCPUL website now features a declaration form that the authors are required to sign.
“The contents of the book, periodical, manuscript, magazine and project do not have any material which is against the national interest or which may create any sort of hatred amongst the different sections of the society,” the declaration reads.
screen grab of National Council for Promotion of Urdu website urducouncil.nic
NCPUL is a body under the HRD Ministry of the Centre and is responsible for promoting Urdu in India to carefully scrutinize every work that they acquire for promotion.
The NCPUL promotes Urdu through the acquisition of authentic Urdu works under the Bulk Purchase of Books scheme. The organisation then distributes these works to libraries across the country so that the Urdu language can be spread and widely read.
While some writers said the circular was understandable since NCUPL is a government organisation, others pointed out that “national interest” was hard to define and subject to interpretations.
The circular may also trigger a fresh controversy amid questions why only Urdu writers have been asked to comply with the order.