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Man attacked over ‘social media status supporting Nupur Sharma’; 14 booked

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A 23-year-old man was attacked by a mob in Karjat taluka of Ahmednagar district in Maharashtra allegedly over his WhatsApp status supporting suspended BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma.

The incident took place on the evening of Thursday, August 4. An First Information Report (FIR) was lodged by a friend of the victim, Pratik alias Sunny Rajendra Pawar at the Karjat police station.

Manoj Patil, superintendent of Ahmednagar police, said the complainant, Amit Mane, has alleged that the attack was over showing support to Nupur Sharma on social media, the police are investigation various angles. So far, five arrests have been made. Police said the victim and the accused had had skirmishes in the past as well and they are investigating whether some previous dispute led to the attack on Pawar now.

The complaint says that a group of about 14 men armed with sharp weapons attacked the complainant and Pawar on Rashin Road in Karjat. Based on the complaint, police have booked 14 persons on charges of attempt to murder as per sections 307, 143, 323, 504, of the Indian Penal Code, and under relevant sections of the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.

Sohail Pathan (24), Arbaz Pathan (23) of Karjat were arrested on Friday and they were remanded to police custody till August 10. On Saturday, three more accused, Junaid Pathan (19) of Karjat, Arbaz Shaikh (24) of Daund, Hussain Shaikh (40) of Baramati were arrested while search is on for the others.

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Meanwhile, local leaders of various political parties held a meeting in Karjat and appealed for peace. Multiple FIRs were lodged against Nupur Sharma for her controversial comments against the Prophet Mohammed during a news debate on the Gyanvapi issue. The BJP expelled Sharma and another party leader Naveen Jindal following the controversy.

Later, at least two persons, including pharmacist Umesh Kolhe of Amravati in Maharashtra, and tailor Kanhaiyalal of Udaipur, Rajasthan, were allegedly murdered for showing support to Sharma.

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