June 17, 2007
Author Salman Rushdie Gets A KnightHood
Sir Salman and actress wife Padma Lakshmi
The man who wrote the book, "The Satanic Verses," which offended Muslims worldwide and had a bounty placed on his head in 1989 has been knighted by Queen Elizabeth II.
Indian-born author Salman Rushdie returned to public life in 1999 following a 1998 announcement by the Iranian government that it would no longer support the fatwa against the author.
Rushdie, who is a devout secularist, went into hiding under threat of death after the fatwa. Some groups still insisted that the fatwa is irrevocable.
Sir Salman was born into a Muslim family in Mumbai, India, in 1947, the son of a businessman. He had his education in England at Rugby School and studied history at Cambridge University.
He published his first novel, "Grimus", in 1975 but was generally ignored by the book-buying public and literary establishment. But his second book - the magic realist novel "Midnight's Children" - catapulted him to literary fame and winning him the Booker Prize in 1981. The novel was also awarded the Booker of Bookers in 1993.
Sir Salman turns 60 on June 19 (Tuesday). He was married to author Marianne Wiggins in 1988. They were divorced in 1993. He is now married to Indian actress Padma Lakshmi. (Sources: BBC and Wikipedia)