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Kaushik Sen receives death threat for signing open letter against lynchings

The letter, signed by 49 prominent personalities, had urged the prime minister to intervene to stop the growing menace of mob lynchings and the conversion of 'Jai Shri Ram' into something of a war cry.

Roushni Sarkar

Theatre personality and film actor Kaushik Sen, who was among the 49 signatories to the open letter to the prime minister against lynchings and mob violence around the country, said on Thursday (25 July) that he had received a death threat on telephone.

In an interview with the Press Trust of India news agency, Sen said, “Yesterday I received a call from an unknown number where I was threatened with dire consequences if I don't stop raising my voice against lynchings and intolerance. I was told that I would be killed if I don't 'mend' my ways.”

The artiste added, “To be honest, I am not bothered about such calls. I have informed other signatories about the call and forwarded the number to them.”

The alleged threat has, meanwhile, been taken up for investigation.

The letter signed by 49 prominent personalities urged the prime minister to intervene to stop the growing menace of mob lynchings in various parts of the country. It also raised concern over the 'Jai Shri Ram' chant being turned into a ‘war cry’, causing a threat to law and order.

Recent incidents of lynching, like those of Tabrez Ansari, who was forced to chant 'Jai Shri Ram' in Jharkhand, were cited in the letter, with the statement, 'Human lynching is our concern. Our objection is against lynchings, be it against Muslims or Hindus.'

Filmmakers Shyam Benegal, Aparna Sen, Anurag Kashyap, legendary actor Soumitra Chatterjee and many other eminent personalities signed the letter that said, 'Dear Prime Minister... The lynching of Muslims, Dalits and other minorities must be stopped immediately. We were shocked to learn from the NCRB [National Crime Records Bureau] reports that there have been no less than 840 instances of atrocities against Dalits in the year 2016, and a definite decline in the percentage of convictions."

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