Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

AFRICA NEWS

Ebola in Nigeria: First death outside of Lagos

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Niger : Top Oppostion figure to be questioned in baby trafficking scandal

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Liberia: President dismisses top officials who ignored call back

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

The deleted tweets of Manuel Valls

Read more

DEBATE

How to Stop Ebola: WHO Says Cases Could Exceed 20,000 (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

How to Stop Ebola: WHO Says Cases Could Exceed 20,000

Read more

WEB NEWS

'Ice Bucket Challenge' angers anti-abortion activists

Read more

#TECH 24

Tomorrow's Transport Today

Read more

FOCUS

Mothers and children leaving Honduras at all costs

Read more

  • West backs Ukrainian claims of Russian incursion

    Read more

  • Obama has 'no strategy yet' on potential Syria strikes

    Read more

  • Mapping Ukraine: Canada and Russia in ‘tweet for tat’ row

    Read more

  • French businesses ‘hoping for a new Thatcher’

    Read more

  • UN says 43 peacekeepers captured in Golan Heights

    Read more

  • The deleted tweets of Manuel Valls

    Read more

  • Peru seizes record 6.5 tonnes of Europe-bound cocaine

    Read more

  • Pakistan army to mediate between PM, protesters

    Read more

  • PSG face Barcelona, Ajax in tough Champions League draw

    Read more

  • In pictures: Billions of locusts invade Madagascan capital

    Read more

  • Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie say ‘I do’ in France

    Read more

  • Erdogan sworn in as Turkey's president

    Read more

  • Assad cannot be partner in fight against terrorism, says Hollande

    Read more

  • New Ebola case in Nigeria brings death toll to 1,552

    Read more

  • Video: 'Neither Baghdad nor the US can defeat the Islamic State'

    Read more

  • Platini will not run against Blatter for FIFA presidency

    Read more

  • Air France pilots announce week-long strike in September

    Read more

  • New French economy minister takes swipe at 35-hour work week

    Read more

  • Air France suspends flights to Ebola-stricken Sierra Leone

    Read more

Asia-pacific

Indian author shot and killed by Taliban in Afghanistan

© afp

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2013-09-05

Suspected members of the Taliban shot and killed Indian author Sushmita Banerjee in Afghanistan Thursday. Banerjee's book about her escape from the Taliban became a Bollywood film and may have been a motive for the shooting, police said.

Suspected Taliban in Afghanistan shot dead Indian author Sushmita Banerjee, whose book about her dramatic escape from the militants in the 90s became a Bollywood film, police said on Thursday.

Police in insurgency-hit Paktika province, in the east of Afghanistan, said they found the body of the 49 year old on Thursday morning, after the militants dragged her out of her husband's home late in the night and shot her repeatedly.

"We found her bullet-riddled body near a madrassa on the outskirts of Sharan city (the provincial capital) this morning," provincial police chief Dawlat Khan Zadran told AFP, confirming earlier reports from Indian media.

Banerjee's book "Kabuliwala's Bengali Wife", about her escape from the Taliban, was made into a Bollywood film in 2003.

Police suggested the book may have been the reason the militants went after her.

"Our investigation... indicates that the militants had grievances against her for something she had written or told in the past," the provincial police chief said.

"She had been shot 20 times and some of her hair had been ripped off by the militants," Zadran said, adding that masked men had tied up the writer and her Afghan husband before executing her.

The Taliban, who have been waging a bloody insurgency since the toppling of their regime in late 2001, were not reachable for comment.

Banerjee was married to local businessman Jaanbaz Khan and had recently moved back to live with him in Paktika, reportedly to run a health clinic for women there.

Sanjana Roy Choudhury, a publisher from Hay House India, told AFP: "It was courageous of her to have written about her escape from Afghanistan.

"She married an Afghani and in trying to live a life with her husband there, this is the price she paid. It's a brave voice that's been quietened."

Bengali writer Samaresh Majumdar added: "Her book recounting her life in Afghanistan and her escape revealed the situation in the country.

"She risked her life by returning to Afghanistan. It was akin to committing suicide."

In an article Banerjee wrote for Outlook magazine in 1998, she said that she went to her inlaws' village in Afghanistan in 1989 but was trapped there after her husband made an urgent business trip to India and failed to return.

"Life was tolerable until the Taliban crackdown in 1993", when the militants ordered her to close a dispensary she was running, she said.

Banerjee made several attempts to escape Afghanistan and in 1994 she made it to Pakistan's capital Islamabad, but her husband's family tracked her down and took her back to Afghanistan.

"They kept me under house arrest and branded me an immoral woman. The Taliban threatened to teach me a lesson. I knew I had to escape," she wrote.

She later made another attempt to escape the family village.

"One night, I made a tunnel through the mud walls of the house and fled. Close to Kabul, I was arrested. A 15-member group of the Taliban interrogated me. Many of them said that since I had fled my husband's home, I should be executed," she wrote.

"However, I was able to convince them that since I was an Indian I had every right to go back to my country.

"The interrogation continued through the night. The next morning I was taken to the Indian embassy from where I was given a safe passage.

"Back in Kolkata I was reunited with my husband. I don't think he will ever be able to go back to his family."

Award-winning Bengali writer Mahasweta Devi said Banerjee's death "is a loss to Bengali literature. Her life was threatened in Afghanistan. She should not have risked her life".

(AFP)

Date created : 2013-09-05

  • DIPLOMACY

    Karzai asks Pakistan for help with Taliban talks

    Read more

  • PAKISTAN

    Taliban frees hundreds in Pakistan prison attack

    Read more

  • UNITED NATIONS

    'They thought the bullet would silence us, but they failed,' Malala tells UN

    Read more

COMMENT(S)