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    Maharashtra to ban controversial book on Gandhi

    Mumbai: Maharashtra government will initiate steps to ban sale of a controversial book on Mahatma Gandhi by Pulitzer prize-winning journalist Joseph Lelyveld.

    "Gandhiji was a respected leader and is known as the father of nation. He led the freedom movement of India. The government will initiate steps to ensure that the book is not published in the state," Industries Minister Narayan Rane told the Legislative Council today.

    The minister also informed that the state government would write to the Centre for not publishing the controversial book.

    Congress MLC and Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee (MPCC) president Manikrao Thakre said in the upper house that the book 'Great Soul: Mahatma Gandhi and His Struggle with India' has maligned the character of the Father of Nation.

    "This is very serious that the author of the book has raised questions about the character of Gandhiji who initiated non-violence movement. I condemn the book and this should not be made available," Thakre said.

    The MPCC president also appealed to members of the House to join hands on the issue. Thakre said he would request the central government on behalf of the Council members to take strict "action" on the issue.

    The book written by Joseph Lelyveld reportedly carries controversial references about the Mahatma.

    Supporting the demand by Thakre, Chairman of the House Shivajirao Deshmukh said that the government should enquire the matter in detail and take appropriate action.