Mumbai: Hours after Shiv Sena (UBT) MP Sanjay Raut received a threat message in the name of gangster Lawrence Bishnoi, the Pune Police have detained one suspect for questioning, officials said on Saturday.
Raut got the threat in a WhatsApp message on Friday evening, warning that he would be shot dead with an AK-47 in Delhi, with reference to the killing of Punjabi singer Sidhu Moosewala last year.
Soon afterwards, Raut complained to the Mumbai Police Commissioner, and a probe was initiated which led to the detention of the suspect in Pune.
The police are questioning him on his links with the Bishnoi gang and also the recent email threats issued to Bollywood actor Salman Khan.
Reacting to the death threat, Raut said he was targeted in similar fashion in the past but he would not be cowed down by such attempts.
“My security and the security of Maha Vikas Aghadi leaders has been removed and deployed for the ‘gaddars’ (traitors)… What did the government do about this,” Raut asked.
He referred to similar threats issued to a prominent NCP leader from Thane (Jitendra Awhad) and accused the government of ignoring such threats faced by the opposition leaders.
Leaders of Opposition Ajit Pawar (Assembly) and Ambadas Danve (Council), NCP MP Supriya Sule, Kishore Tiwari, and Congress leaders expressed serious concerns over the threats and urged the government to take the matter seriously.
The threat to Raut with a reference to Salman Khan said: “Anti-Hindu, I will kill you. Meet me in Delhi, will finish you off with an AK47. Like Moosewala. Treat this as a message from Lawrence Bishnoi.”
Meanwhile, a senior Mumbai Police officer said that the detenu – identified as Rahul Talekar – has no links with the Bishnoi gang and had reportedly made the threats (to Raut) in a drunken state. Further investigation is underway.
Shiv Sena (UBT) MLA Sunil Raut, the brother of Sanjay Raut, questioned the police version, wondering if the person was inebriated “how could he issue the threat only to Sanjay Raut”.
On his part, Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis warned that the state government and police will not “sit quietly” if anybody comes and makes such threats to anyone.
He assured that one person has been detained who is being investigated for the threats and appropriate action will be taken against him.
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