M.F. Husain’s work cannot be shown at the Indian Art Summit because of threats made by Hindu hardliners. Now another artist is being intimidated by a Hindu groups, including the one that organized pressure on Husain. Agence France Presse reports that Subodh Kerkar has angered Hindu groups for his images of the god, Ganesh:
“I have been receiving phone calls which threaten me with dire consequences. They told me that they will chop off my fingers for indulging in such acts,” Subodh Kerkar told AFP from his home in the resort state of Goa.
Kerkar has sketched the male elephant-headed god Ganesha in various guises for a new exhibition in the former Portuguese colony. One shows the deity performing a traditional Maori dance, or haka. He is also depicted in a similar pose to French sculptor Auguste Rodin’s work “The Thinker”, and walking naked carrying a garden rake.
Kerkar, 49, said the threats started when the hardline Sanatan Sanstha group told Hindus to call him and “express their anguish” at the images. Two other groups then filed complaints with police, alleging that the art works hurt religious feelings. One, the Hindu Jangruti Samiti, called for demonstrations at the exhibition venue.