“Nikal jaao yahaan se (Get out of here).” Professor Ram Puniyani, the relentless campaigner for communal harmony, was threatened and asked to stop his “anti-Hindu” activities by an unknown caller on Thursday, 6 June, evening.
Puniyani, a noted civil rights activist and academician, told The Quint that the first call was made to his landline from an unknown number at around 8:30 pm on Thursday. The call was received by his brother-in-law.
"“The caller was abusive and aggressive. Mistaking my brother-in-law to be me, the unknown person kept saying that I should stop my ‘Anti-Hindu’ activities and get out of here. The caller said if I didn’t leave within the next 15 days, I will have to face consequences.”" - Dr Ram Puniyani
The former IIT professor said there was another call from a different number five minutes later. This time, Puniyani received the call himself. “They asked me if they were speaking to Ram Puniyani. I decline and refused to introduce myself. The caller then hung up,” he said.
Apart from registering an FIR, Dr Puniyani has also intimated the Mumbai’s Commissioner of Police, Shri Sanjay Barve, about the threat call and intimidation.
He added that this is not the first time he had to face such an intimidation. In March 2019, some ‘plain-clothed policemen’ had visited his house on the pretext of inquiring about his passport which Dr Puniyani says he never applied for. After this incident, several prominent civil society members had urged the Mumbai police commissioner to take cognisance of the danger and threats to Puniyani’s life.
73-year-old Professor Puniyani is known for conducting several lectures and workshops championing the cause of social and communal harmony. He has travelled far and wide in the country spreading the message of secularism, pluralism and national integration. He has received several awards for his work including the Indira Gandhi National Integration Award 2006 and the National Communal Harmony Award 2007. He has also authored many books on communal politics and harmony in the country.
. Read more on India by The Quint.RSS & BJP’s Nehru-Netaji ‘Cosplay’: Irony Dies a Thousand DeathsWhy Mamata Needs Prashant Kishor’s I-PAC for 2021 Bengal Campaign . Read more on India by The Quint.