Calicut withdraws controversial poem

Kozhikode: Calicut University has decided to withdraw the controversial poem by suspected al-Qaeda leader Ibrahim al-Rubaish from its syllabus based on an expert committee’s recommendation on Thursday.The move, however, has triggered another debate about strictures on creative expression. The poem—Ode to the Sea—that appeared in the textbook of Literature and Contemporary Issues for undergraduate students spelled trouble for the university because of the poet’s past. Al-Rubaish is a former inmate of the Guantanamo Bay detention camp where the US administration held and interrogated terror suspects. The committee, headed by Dr. M M Basheer, has sought withdrawal of the poem.

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