Swami Ramdev faces threat to life

via Navin Upadhyay | New Delhi - Daily Pioneer published on January 18, 2010

Yoga guru Baba Ramdev is facing threat to his life and intelligence agencies are keeping a close watch on his security.

Alarmed by a spate of emails, letters and independent feedback that pointed to the ever growing threats to his life, Baba Ramdev has informed the Home Ministry and intelligence agencies that he could be targeted by Islamic militant groups and multinational agencies.

“Yes, Baba has informed the Government about the threats to his life,” says Bala Krishna, a close associate of the Yoga guru.

Talking to The Pioneer over phone, Bala Krishna said IB sleuths have been visiting the Patanjali Yogpeeth at Haridwar and trying to assess the nature of threats. “They have met the guru and discussed the whole issue of threats and security with him. We feel that Baba’s security must be upgraded,” Bala Krishna said.

The man who has revolutionised yoga teaching and taken the Indian tradition of medicine and cure to different corners of the world, has been provided Y-category security that involves protection by nine policemen.

Sources said that Baba has specifically identified two potential threats; one from Islamic militant groups, and the second from MNCs. Baba is reported to have told IB sleuths and officials that based on personal knowledge and feedback received from his well-wishers, he apprehends that he was on the hit list of Islamic groups for preaching religious tolerance and communal amity.

At the same time, he has expressed fears that several MNCs could be keen to see him eliminated because his preaching of ‘swadeshi’ and campaign to avoid harmful consumer goods produced by these multinationals.

Baba has been in the centre of many controversies in the past. He has repeatedly lashed out against colas and advised the people to use them as toilet cleaners. His advocacy of Indian medicine and his claim that he could cure AIDS and cancer with yoga and pranayam has also won him many detractors.

Talking about threats from extremist outfits, Bal Krishna said, “Baba’s thrust on reaching out to even the Muslims has angered several fanatical elements. They think he is a kafir who should be eliminated for teaching yoga to the Muslims.”

Bala Krishna added that Baba’s campaign against corruption has also earned him many enemies. A section of people are threatened by him, and they have every reason to eliminate him. We have repeatedly drawn the attention of the Government to the threats, but adequate steps have not been taken to protect him.”

Bal Krishna said that ‘hate’ emails and letters could have been dismissed as handiworks of ‘cranks’, but independent inputs from different sources have suggested that certain elements were actively plotting to eliminate Baba.

“We hope that the Government will take the threat seriously and act accordingly by upgrading his security cover,” Bal Krishna said.

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