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State imposes book ban

Cuttack, March 5: The Orissa government has decided to strictly enforce a ban on The Lives of Sri Aurobindo authored by Peter Heehs after state CID reports indicated that circulation of the book would outrage the religious feelings of people.

The ban would be imposed by invoking Section 95 of the Criminal Procedure Code as the book reportedly contains defamatory content about the spiritual leader.

Informing the court about the state’s decision, the home department on Wednesday said that the contents of the book attracted several penal provisions under Sections 295, 292 and 153-A of the Indian Penal Code.

The state CID was asked to carry out an investigation after the high court imposed restrictions on Penguin Books India Ltd from publishing the biography without obtaining a “no-objection certificate” from the Union information and broadcasting and home ministries. The Columbia University Press in USA had already published the biography.

It was slated for release by Penguin Books in India in November 2008.

The Orissa High Court imposed the restriction on November 4, 2008, and also issued notices to the Union Information and broadcasting ministry.

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