Threat to Thackeray being assessed following LeT statement

June 20th, 2008 - 7:41 pm ICT by IANS  

Mumbai, June 20 (IANS) The Maharashtra government is “assessing” the threat perception to Shiv Sena chief Bal Thackeray in the wake of the Lashkar-e-Taiba’s (LeT) reported statement in Srinagar. A news organisation in Srinagar Thursday quoted LeT chief Qari Abdul Wahid Kashmiri as saying that Muslim community members would be protected from “Hindu fundamentalist terrorism”. He said this in response to a call by Thackeray for creating Hindu suicide squads to fight Islamic terrorism.

A police official told IANS Friday afternoon that following the LeT chief’s statement, the agencies concerned are assessing the threats to the Sena leader, but declined to elaborate.

Kashmiri is also said to have urged the international community and human rights organisations to take note of Thackeray’s call made in the editorial of his Shiv Sena’s newspaper Saamna this week.

Saamna executive editor and Rajya Sabha member Sanjay Raut said: “It is nothing new for Shiv Sena.”

“In fact, Thackeray has been getting such terrorist threats since the past more than 40 years. In recent years, the threats come through various channels, including news channels,” he said.

Raut said the LeT threat only emphasized the Sena’s well-known stance - “The greatest threat to this country is from cross-border Islamic terrorism.”

The LeT chief’s statement said: “Whether it is Indian forces or Hindu fundamentalists like Bajrang Dal and Shiv Sena, LeT will defeat their ill motives and prevent Muslim community members from Hindu fundamentalist terrorism.”

Kashmiri alleged that India and its intelligence agencies were hatching a deep-rooted conspiracy against the Muslim community.

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