Goa chief minister Manohar Parrikar Tuesday advised a theatre director who has received death threats by phone to switch off his mobile phone or change his SIM card. “The problem will be over,” Parrikar told the Goa legislative assembly while blaming the media for inciting “cockfights”.

Parrikar was referring to a local Konkani play “Akantvadi Goeant Naka” which was staged by director Tousif de Navelim under tight security Saturday. Tousif had claimed that he received 190 threat calls over several days before the play, whose theme was against communal outfits.

“If he switched off the phone, the problem would have been over… There are attempts being made to bring peaceful Goa to a boil,” Parrikar said, also referring to the director as “Tousif-Fousif”. Parrikar also promised to give a detailed account of the alleged threat calls received by Tousif during the ongoing monsoon session of the Goa legislative assembly.

With the play and the threats to Tousif making front page news for several days in some papers, Parrikar said that the media was encouraging a “cockfight” between two groups. The chief minister also asked the Congress in Goa to protest in Bengaluru and ask its party’s government in Karnataka to ban the Sri Rama Sena (SRS) there first.

“They should go to Bengaluru and protest. The Goa government will pay the fare,” Parrikar said, adding that he will ban the SRS if the organisation sets up shop in Goa.