BJP MP trolled me, I’ll sue him if he doesn’t reply to legal notice: Prakash Raj

Film actor Prakash Raj said on Thursday he has sent a legal notice to BJP leader Pratap Simha for “trolling” him, days after the Mysuru MP attacked the artiste over his remarks over journalist Gauri Lankesh’s murder.

Raj had criticised Narendra Modi in October over what he said was the Prime Minister’s “silence” on those “celebrating” Lankesh’s killing. The 55-year-old editor and publisher of Kannada-language newspaper ‘Gauri Lankesh Patrike’ was shot dead outside her home in Bengaluru in September.

“I have sent a legal notice to Mr Pratap Simha as a citizen of this country for the way he has trolled me, which has disturbed my personal life. I am asking him to answer legally and if he doesn’t, I will be taking criminal action against him,” news agency ANI quoted Raj as saying on Thursday.

Simha is a former Karnataka journalist who now heads the BJP’s Yuva Morcha in the state. The News Minute reported that Raj’s legal notice describes an October 2 tweet and Facebook post by Simha that talks about the actor’s deceased son and his personal life. The post was uploaded a day after Raj spoke against PM Modi.

Raj has commented about moral policing, violence “on the slightest doubt of cow slaughter”, and alleged harassment of people for their religion.

Media reports said in October that Raj had threatened to return his National Awards after Lankesh’s murder. He later posted a clarification on Twitter: “I am not a fool to give back my National Awards, which have been given to me for my body of work, and which I’m very proud of.”

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Shortly after Raj’s remarks were reported by the media, Simha defended PM Modi. “If he (Raj) continues to speak irresponsibly about Prime Minister Narendra Modi, we are going to teach him a lesson,” Simha said.

“When I questioned the prime minister, you (Simha) talk below the belt? They believe their leaders are doing a good job, so nobody should question them,” Raj said in November.

On the first anniversary of demonetisation on November 8, Raj wrote a note demanding an apology from the government for the “disruptive impact” of its decision.

He attacked the government again on Thursday, saying it was not right for it to remain silent over the controversy around Padmavati’s release.

Asked about actor Kamal Haasan’ tweets criticising the government on various issues, Raj said some ministers were blaming the actor without having any proof.