BJP candidate in the Ponnani constituency V.T. Rama alleged that she was insulted by a teacher at Malayalam University when she visited the campus as part of her electioneering on Wednesday.
The BJP, in a complaint given at the Tirur police station, alleged that Assistant Professor N.V. Mohamed Rafi shouted at Ms. Rama when she sought his vote at the university library. The complaint said she was asked to get out of the library.
Ms. Rama said it was unfortunate that a teacher who ought to be shaping up the minds of the students in a cultured manner behaved in a “culture-less manner”. She said the insult she suffered at the university indicated the pathetic condition of education in the State.
But Dr. Rafi said it was Ms. Rama who created a scene at the university library by electioneering inside it without taking permission.
He said he was guiding a few doctoral students in their research work inside the library when the BJP candidate approached him asking for his vote.
According to witnesses, Dr. Rafi’s reply to Ms. Rama was an emphatic ‘no’, which sparked off an argument between them, ultimately leading to an emotional outburst from the teacher.
“I believe I have the right to say ‘no’ to the BJP, because I hate that party for what it did in Gujarat,” said Dr. Rafi.
Meanwhile, Dr. Rafi alleged that he faced threat to his life after the incident. He said he was bombarded with abuses and negative messages on social media threatening to kill him and his family.
Malayalam University Vice Chancellor Anil Vallathol, on the basis of a report by the librarian, sought an explanation from Dr. Rafi.
Dr. Vallathol said Ms. Rama had told him that she had no complaints.