Author Arundhati Roy apologised on Wednesday after a video of her from 2011, drawing parallels between the Pakistan and Indian armies, resurfaced on social media. Roy, in a statement to ThePrint, explained that what she had said back then did not represent her current opinions.
In the video, the writer was speaking at a panel discussion about India deploying personnel in states like Kashmir, Telangana and the North East. She said that Pakistan had not stationed troops “against its own people the way India has”.
On Wednesday, Roy said people unintentionally “say something thoughtless or stupid” at some point in their lives. “This tiny clip of video in no way represents what I believe, or indeed what I have written over the years,” she said, adding that what she committed to words was far more important than what she “might say extempore in the course of a freewheeling talk”.
She added: “Still, It is a matter of enormous consequence and I apologize for any momentary confusion the clip may have caused.”
The author said her opinion on what Islamabad was doing in Balochistan and the “genocide that the Pakistan Army committed in Bangladesh have never been ambiguous” and were reflected in her writings. To prove this, she shared two examples of her writing, an excerpt from her novel The Ministry of Utmost Happiness and an essay titled Walking with the Comrades.
The writer blamed right-wing supporters for digging up the video to stifle her opinions on the current situation in Jammu and Kashmir. “Given my views on what is happening in Kashmir now, it is not surprising that Hindu Nationalists are rushing to generate outrage over this exciting new/old canard they have dug up about my supposed denial of the genocide in Bangladesh and the deeds of the Pakistan Army in Pakistan,” Roy said. She further added that the “architecture of pure fascism” was being put in place in the country and anyone who goes against it would be stopped.
Roy faced a barrage of criticism after the nearly decade-old video started doing the rounds on social media.
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