Nija Vaishakh Krushna Navami, Kaliyug Varsha 5112
New Delhi: The controversy over Spanish writer Javier Moro's book 'The Red Saree', a fictionalised account of the life of Sonia Gandhi, is getting murkier with the author threatening to sue her counsel Abhishek Singhvi, who in turn terms Moro's charges as comic if not tragic.
The book, which was first published in Spanish with a title 'El Sari Rojo' in 2008 and is set for India release, has stirred a storm with Congress chief's lawyers describing it as containing "untruths, half truths, falsehoods and defamatory statements" and served Moro with a legal notice.
Claiming that Singhvi was "terrorising the publishers", Moro said, "I don't know how Abhishek Manu Singhvi or others have got their hands on the version when the book is not even in the market yet. He has got a version (of the book) in an illicit manner. I plan to sue him."
"My book is a book on the glory of the Gandhi family. It defends the ideals of the Gandhi family. These ideals I myself defend," Moro said.
"I have said that the lawyer Abhishek Singhvi is terrorising the publishers that does not mean that the Congress Party is censoring me. It has nothing to do with the Congress Party itself."
"I think nobody in the Congress has read the book. They are taking lines out of context and manipulating the text... They are already manipulating the text that is what Singhvi is doing. I think Sonia Gandhi is being surrounded by all these watchdogs to show he can be the toughest lawyer. All this has led to a ridiculous and absurd controversy," the author said.
Maintaining that the legal notice was issued to Moro almost six months ago by authorisation of the victim of his defamation, Singhvi said, "Moro's comments would be comic if they were not tragic. He does not seem to understand the ABC of law or practice.”
"I am barely the legal adviser, who had settled the legal notice, which is specifically issued on the behalf of the Congress president. Is Mr Moro naive or ignorant in not realising that the book is on Congress president and the legal notice has also been sent by her and on her behalf," he added.
Singhvi, also Congress spokesman, said, "Moro is welcome to exercise all his legal rights but he has never taken this point in the last seven months of correspondence. There is no English language book nor any Indian edition. We have merely got a manuscript and we do not propose to oblige Moro by telling him its source," he said.
Claiming it to be a fictionalised account of Gandhi's life, Moro has reportedly referred to Gandhi's origin in Italy, her marriage to Rajiv Gandhi and the difficult times she went through after his assassination.
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