After facing massive outrage, publishing house Bloomsbury India has decided to withdraw the book titled "Delhi Riots 2020 - The Untold Story", which was slated to be launched on 22 August. BJP leader Kapil Mishra, who is accused of delivering hate speeches before the violence, was reportedly invited as the Guest of Honour to the event.
The publishing house in a statement to The Quint said:
“Bloomsbury India had planned to release Delhi Riots 2020: The Untold Story in September, a book purportedly giving a factual report on the riots in Delhi in February 2020, based on investigations and interviews conducted by the authors. However, in view of very recent events including a virtual pre-publication launch organised without our knowledge by the authors, with participation by parties of whom the Publishers would not have approved, we have decided to withdraw publication of the book. Bloomsbury India strongly supports freedom of speech but also has a deep sense of responsibility towards society.”Bloomsbury India to The Quint
Sharing a poster advertising the upcoming book launch, advocate Monika Arora, who has authored the book alongside two others, had wrote:
“How Jehadi-Naxal lobby planned & executed ‘Delhi Riots-The Untold Story’. Book launch on 22 Aug at 4 pm...”
Further, Arora had announced that BJP leader Kapil Mishra, who has been explicitly named in at least two complaints regarding the Northeast Delhi Riots of February, 2020, is a guest of honour at the event.
The news of invitation to Mishra and the publication of the book itself had led to much controversy with many calling it “one-sided” and “dehumanising.” However, Bloomsbury had categorically denied organising a book launch event.