Targeted attacks on Hindus for supporting former Bharatiya Janata Party spokesperson Nupur Sharma are still continuing. On 4th August 2022, a Hindu youth named Prateek Pawar from the Karjat town in the Ahmednagar district of Maharashtra was attacked by around 12 to 15 Islamists who attacked him with various weapons like swords and sticks. Prateek Pawar is being treated in a private hospital in Ahmednagar.
According to the complaint by Prateek Pawar and his friend Amit Mane, the groups of Islamists attacked 23-year-old Prateek Pawar on August 4. Mane said that on August 4 Pawar was going towards Karjat in Ahmednagar and had stopped on the road near Akkabai chowk waiting for a friend. But suddenly around 12 to 14 people arrived in a white Swift car, and three two-wheelers – a black Bullet, a red Pulsar and a white scooter – and surrounded him. They told Pawar, ‘You have so much proud in Hindutva’. They further told him, ‘You are regularly posting posts and statuses on social media supporting Nupur Sharma and Kanhaiya Lal, due to which more people have started to support them, we think we should do a Umesh Kolhe with you also’. They were referring to the murder of Umesh Kolhe in Maharashtra for supporting Nupur Sharma.
After that, one Islamist named Shahrukh Pathan assaulted Prateek Pawar with a sword with the intention to kill him while chanting loud slogans. Pawar tried to protect himself and in the process, the sword hit his hand. After this, Nihal Khan Pathan and Sohail Khan Pathan attacked Sunny on the head from behind. The gravely injured Hindu youth fell to the ground and started bleeding, but the Islamist group continued to hit him with swords, sticks, hockey sticks etc saying that they will not let a Kafir remain alive. After a blow on the head with a sword, Prateek fainted and the attackers fled from the scene.
The victim was immediately rushed to a hospital, and police launched a probe into the case. The accused have been booked under sections 307, 143, 147, 148, 149 , 323, 504 of the IPC on the basis of the complaint filed by Amit Mane. Several persons including Sharukh Khan Pathan, Sohel Pathan, Nihal Khan Pathan, Ilail Sheikh, Tipu Pathan, Arbaz Kasam Pathan, Arshan Pathan, Aqeeb Syed have been named in the case. Reportedly, four persons have been arrested by the police.
‘Our hands are not tied’, says BJP MLA Nitesh Rane
BJP MLA Nilesh Rane today held a press conference at the BJP state headquarters in Mumbai to talk about the attack.
Nilesh Rane said, “I am holding this press conference as a Hindu. The first killings for supporting Nupur Sharma took place in Udaipur in Rajasthan and Amravati in Maharashtra. A similar attempt was made on 4th August 2022 at Karjat in the Ahmednagar district in Maharashtra. A Hindu youth named Prateek Pawar was heading towards the community celebrations organized to mark the birth anniversary of great Dalit Marathi writer AnnaBhau Sathe. On his way to that program, a group of 10 to 15 Muslims stopped him and said – ‘You put Nupur Sharma’s photo as the display picture on your social media account. You are also asking other people in the town to do so. You are raising your voice as a Hindu.’ And these miscreants assaulted Prateek Pawar.”
Nitesh Rane further said, “The attackers had sharp weapons. Prateek Pawar was alone. Due to this brutal attack, he fell unconscious to the ground. The attackers thought that he died and thus they left the spot. When Prateek Pawar’s friends came to the spot, they took him to a government hospital from where he was shifted to a private hospital to get better treatment. He had 35 stitches. His ribs are broken. He is fighting his battle against death.”
Nitesh Rane added, “We live in a country that operates according to the constitution penned by Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar. Nupur Sharma’s issue is over. But if it is being revisited again and again as a reason to kill some Hindus in this state, then the attackers should realize that no one has tied our hands. The FIR, in this case, is registered; but the local police inspector was trying to pressurize Hindus as he visited the victim’s home. Our local leaders from various Hindu organizations came together and informed to the deputy chief minister Devendra Fadnavis who instructed the police officials to take proper action. So far four culprits are arrested but the main attackers are still absconding. We request the police to take swift action and arrest all of them.”
BJP MLA further said, “This is not the Maha Vikas Aghadi government. Nawab Malik is no more the minority affairs minister. If you target us Hindus like this, we can give an equally brutal reply. We follow the Constitution. There is no Sharia law in our country. Somebody says something to your deities and you are not ready to forget that. But at the same time, Hindu deities are insulted every day on social media and in public life. Why should we forget it all then? A youth in Nashik had spread the Shivling image with a condom put on it, a few weeks back. We took legal action against him. And we let it go. We did not kill him. But if you are not ready to forget such things and if you are ready to even kill us, then I give an open message to all those people that we are ready to retaliate.
Nitesh Rane said, “Don’t dare to touch our people. A country protected by weapons can only take care of its knowledge. If you provoke us to do certain things necessary to protect our Dharma and Nation, we will definitely do all those things. I demand that this matter in Karjat should be probed by NIA. No such incident should repeat in Maharashtra. This is my open warning as a Hindu. We will not attack first. But at the same time we will not tolerate such violence and we will show you that we are capable to defend ourselves in the way we want.”