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E-searches for ‘The Satanic Verses’ up after Rushdie attack | India News

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CHENNAI: The attack on author Salman Rushdie in New York on Friday has led to renewed interest among India’s netizens in the author’s controversial work, ‘The Satanic Verses’, almost three decades after its launch. Even though sale of the book is banned in India, search traffic relating to the book and the author have spiked on Google.
Traffic for the term “Satanic Verses download” spiked starting late on Friday and continued to trend strongly through thr weekend and till Monday morning. A regional analysis showed that the highest search traffic came from West Bengal, followed by Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi and Maharashtra, in this order. The award-winning author’s name also trended, and was the second most-searched term on Google in India on Friday, with over 1 million searches clocked.
Indians’ interest in knowing more about the book was evident on the internet. Traffic for the words “Satanic Verses” peaked at around 11. 30 pm on Friday night and rema- ined high over Saturday before tapering on Sunday. The highest search interest for just the book’s title came from Mizoram, Nagaland, Delhi, Arunachal Pradesh and Manipur, in this order, an analysis of regional trends showed.
The book is not listed on online book stores in India as it was banned. But secondhand books online store Bookchor. com told TOIthat search traffic had shot up since Friday and that orders for other books by the same author are up almost 25% from the period prior to the incident. “While we do not sell that book (The Satanic Verses’) as per the law, there’s always been demand for that book among readers. Since the incident, queries for his books have increased even more,” a spokesperson said.
Globally, sales of the controversial book have skyrocketed. A look through the bestsellers’ list on Amazon’s US website (updated hourly based on sales) on Monday afternoon showed that ‘The Satanic Verses’ was at the No. 1 spot in the category of contemporary literature and fiction , and at No. 13 on the overall book bestsellers’ list.
Amazon India and Flipkart did not respond to queries from TOI.

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