Video Producer: Naman Shah
Video Editor: Shohini Bose
The Bihar Police on Tuesday, 19 July, refuted reports of any 'Nupur Sharma angle' in an attack on a 23-year-old youth by a knife-wielding man in the state's Sitamarhi.
The statement by the police came after a purported video of the incident, reported to have taken place on 15 July, went viral on social media, following which several reports suggested that the youth was attacked for allegedly sharing a social media post supporting former BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma's remarks on Prophet Muhammad.
What the Victim Claims
The injured youth said that he was with a friend at a tea stall watching a social media status uploaded online and talking to a friend about it when one of the accused stabbed him five to six times from the back.
"We were at the shop having paan. I am a regular at that shop. My friend and I were talking among ourselves, when one man came from behind and asked me if I support Nupur Sharma. I said that I do, since I am a Hindu. He then punched me, and I punched him back. Meanwhile, one person stabbed me from behind," Jha told local media at the hospital.
"I don't know the ones who stabbed me. I have never seen them in the village," he added.
The family of the injured youth, who was identified as Ankit Kumar Jha, claimed that the police registered an FIR after removing Sharma's name from the complaint that they had filed, reported Hindustan Times.
What Do the Police Say
Speaking to The Quint, Vijay Kumar Ram, SHO Nanpur, said that the incident happened when the accused along with a few other men, gathered at a roadside tea stall to smoke.
Denying a communal angle, SHO Ram claimed that an argument broke out after one of the men allegedly blew smoke on Jha's face, following which the matter escalated.
Meanwhile, Har Kishore Rai, SP, Sitamarhi also denied that the stabbing incident was related to Nupur Sharma, reported ANI.
He said that the youth had issued a statement to media on Monday and claimed that it had something to do with the Nupur Sharma controversy. "However, we'd found no such link," he said.
Two people were arrested a day after the incident and sent to judicial custody. The police said that raids are being conducted at several locations to nab the other two accused.
(With inputs from Hindustan Times.)