Liberal Democrat Secretary of State for Scotland Alistair Carmichael today called on the First Minister to put a stop to the use of intimidation tactics by Yes campaigners.
Mr Carmichael's intervention followed a nationalist protest against the BBC's coverage of the referendum this weekend and comments from former SNP deputy leader Jim Sillars warning of a 'day of reckoning' for businesses raising concerns over independence.
Speaking to the BBC today, Mr Carmichael said:
"The reality of this is the people who are jostled in the streets, the people who are pushed off the streets are not Alex Salmond or Nicola Sturgeon or John Swinney; it's people like John Prescott and Alistair Darling. And they are pushed off the streets by people waving Yes posters.
"If there is bullying here, clearly there is now quite a serious atmosphere where people who are supporting a No vote don't feel comfortable in saying so publicly.
"And then, at the weekend, you have somebody like Jim Sillars come out and say there'll be a 'day of reckoning' for any business that supports a No vote.
"You've got a mob outside Pacific Quay, the BBC headquarter in Glasgow, trying to influence their reporting of this referendum. These are serious, serious tactics to be adopted and really, the person who could stop it all and pull the heat out of this is Alex Salmond. But time after time, despite every invitation to do so, he just ignores it.
"What I can tell you is that it can be stopped by Alex Salmond now. And it's not an isolated incident. We hear it from business people all the time that if they make comments that are disobliging to the campaign then they'll get phone calls from senior Nationalist figures. You hear it from journalists exactly the same story.
"This is probably, is certainly, the most important decision the people of Scotland will ever be called upon to make and nobody should be intimidated from having their say in this debate. And sadly, when you talk to people on the streets and doorsteps you find that they in fact are feeling exactly the same way."