A packet containing some suspected explosive substance, a detonator and a threat letter in connection with Jawaharlal Nehru University Students’ Union president Kanhaiya Kumar’s expected visit in April, was received by the office of the director of the Film Training Institute of India in Pune on Saturday evening, police said.
The packet was addressed to the previous director of the FTII Prashant Pathrabe.
Bhupendra Kainthola, the present director of the institute, said, “My office received the packet at 5.30 pm and since the contents were suspicious, we alerted the police.”
Senior police inspector Sushma Chavan of the Deccan Gymkhana Police Station said the parcel contained a detonator and a white powder, suspected to be some explosive material. It also had a letter, warning the director against allowing Kumar to visit the FTII campus.
Police suspects that the packet must have been sent before Kumar’s visit to Pune on April 24, when Pathrabe was the director of FTII.
Kumar, who addressed a gathering in Pune on that day, was reportedly going to visit the FTII too, but eventually he did not.
“The contents have been sent to the forensic lab,” inspector Chavan said.
The FTII Students’ Association said it was shocked by the incident.
The FTII students, throughout the strike last year (against the appointment of TV actor and Bharatiya Janata Party member Gajendra Chauhan as the chairman of FTII) had received numerous threat letters, ‘but now the price of questioning the government has reached a stage where you receive an explosive substance’, it said.
“This only speaks of the intolerant, insensitive and criminal attitude of people who are doing everything to stop dissent across the country. We strongly condemn this cowardly act and appeal to the government to immediately enquire into this issue,” the association said in a statement.