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After FTII, journalism dept of Pune varsity gets threat letter

Journalism students of this institute had played a key role in inviting Kumar to Pune despite fierce opposition by right-wing groups.

By: Express News Service | Pune |
May 10, 2016 4:13:33 am
FTII, Pune university, journalism department, threat letter, Film and Television Institute of India, FTII live detonator, FTII news, India Post parcel, Savitribai Phule Pune University, pune news The parcel was delivered on Saturday afternoon, the same time the FTII received the package. Express

Two days after the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) received a package containing a live detonator and an “explosive-like substance” through an India Post parcel, the Department of Communication and Journalism of Savitribai Phule Pune University received a similar packet, which also contained a threat letter warning students and the institute administration against backing student leader Kanhaiya Kumar.

Journalism students of this institute had played a key role in inviting Kumar to Pune despite fierce opposition by right-wing groups.

According to the police, the packet containing a live detonator, a yellowish substance and a threat letter addressed to Madhvi Reddy, head of the Department (in-charge) of Communication and Journalism located on the Fergusson College Road, was delivered by the postman on Saturday afternoon, the same time the FTII received the package.

“The content of the package is the same. The matter of the letter is also the same and even the modus is identical. It’s obvious that the same person or persons are involved in both the incidents. The letter warns the students against supporting Kanhaiya Kumar while calling him an anti-national and one who speaks against ‘patriotic army men’,” said Sudhir Hiremath, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Zone-1) of the Pune Police.

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Hiremath said the place of origination of the parcel couldn’t be ascertained as the postal seal on the packet was illegible.

“After the offices of postal department opened today, we took their help to find out from where the FTII parcel had originated. The efforts bore no fruit. We are now sending these packets for forensic examination so that partially faded postal seals can be read,” said Hiremath.

The DCP said the police were probing a local angle to the incidents given the fact that in 2015, a member of Sambhaji Brigade had received a similar package. Vice Chancellor of Savitribai Phule Pune University, Wasudeo Gade, said that although the package was received on Saturday afternoon, it wasn’t opened by anyone else as it was addressed to Reddy who opened it on Monday after reporting to office.

“There was a large packet containing a letter and smaller packet. She didn’t open the smaller packet after reading the letter, which was addressed to her directly. We handed over the parcel to the police without opening the smaller packet,” he said.

This is the second time a threat has been issued to the department which is situated inside the premises of Ranade institute. A few months ago, a police complaint was lodged when a student alleged he had been threatened by a political activist with consequences if Kumar was allowed on the campus. Gade said an urgent meeting had been convened for Tuesday to review security arrangements at the institute amidst repeated threats.

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