The western India state of Gujarat Wednesday banned a new biography of Mahatma Gandhi because of reviews that say the book suggests the independence leader was gay.
According to the Associated Press, the Gujarat state assembly voted unanimously to ban Great Soul: Mahatma Gandhi and His Struggle With India by Joseph Lelyveld. The author argues that his work is being misinterpreted.
“The furor was sparked by local media reports, based on early reviews out of the U.S. and U.K., some of which emphasized passages in the book suggesting Gandhi had an intimate relationship with a German man named Hermann Kallenbach,” reports the AP.
The reviews include one in The Wall Street Journal by conservative historian Andrew Roberts, who concluded that the biography suggests Gandhi was gay and a racist.
The book has not been released in India yet, but some have called for bans in the state of Maharashtra, home to Mumbai, and nationwide, according to the AP.
The Delhi high court struck down the British colonial era ban on gay sex in 2009, but the supreme court will hear petitions against the ruling in April.