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Imran Khan Nixes India Trip Over Salman Rushdie


Pakistani opposition leader and former cricketer Imran Khan

Pakistani opposition leader and former cricketer Imran Khan

Pakistani cricket hero and politician Imran Khan has canceled a planned trip to India after it was announced that British author Salman Rushdie would speak at the same conference.

The leader of Pakistan's Tehrrek-e-Insaaf party was scheduled to attend the high-profile India Today Conclave in New Delhi as a keynote speaker.

A statement from his party, however, said Khan "could not even think" about sharing a stage with Rushdie.

Death threats forced Rushdie to withdraw from the Jaipur Literary Festival in India in January.

The Mumbai-born author's 1988 novel "The Satanic Verses" is banned in India and Pakistan for allegedly blaspheming Muslims.

In 1989, Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini issued a fatwa death sentence against Rushdie over the book.

The Iranian government later lifted the fatwa.

With AFP and Pakistan Today reporting
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