New Delhi, July 19
A Pakistani man who crossed the border was arrested by the Border Security Force (BSF) in Rajasthan last week for remarks by former BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma against Prophet Mohammad. Officials gave this information on Tuesday.
He said that Rizwan Ashraf (24), a resident of Mandi Bahauddin district of Pakistan’s Punjab province, was caught near the India-Pakistan International Border fence in Sriganganagar sector.
Officials said that two knives, a clever, three religious books, a comb, hair oil, electric tester, map, food, clothes and a national identity card of Pakistan issued in 2019 were recovered from him, among other items.
Sri Ganganagar Superintendent of Police Anand Sharma said, “The Pakistani national was arrested on the intervening night of July 16-17. During preliminary interrogation, the Pakistani man has revealed that he had planned to kill Nupur Sharma. She was religiously involved. Looks inspired.”
The Pakistani was produced by the police before a local court, which remanded him in custody till July 24. A senior official said the man is currently being questioned by a Joint Interrogation Committee (JIC) comprising officials from the BSF, state police and intelligence agencies.
Senior officials claimed that the man had initially told officials that he had come to the border as he wanted to visit the Ajmer Sharif Dargah, but later said that he also wanted to kill Sharma for his remarks on the Prophet, Senior officials claimed. Sharma said the man is being questioned to ascertain his links.
Officials said an FIR has been registered against the accused under sections of the Foreigners Act, the Indian Passport Act and the Arms Act.
Police sources said that the accused had attended a religious gathering in Pakistan and had planned to kill the BJP leader after being inspired.
The arrest of the Pakistani man comes in the backdrop of Sharma’s now-suspended remarks on the Prophet, which led to protests at several places across the country.