Motihari Police on Friday booked 12 people on charges of beating up an assistant professor of Mahatma Gandhi Central University, shortly after he shared a Facebook post that was critical of former Prime Minister Atal Bihar Vajpayee, who died Thursday.
According to his colleagues, Sanjay Kumar, assistant professor with the university’s sociology department, has suffered internal injuries and is fainting at regular intervals. He is being brought to Patna Medical College and Hospital.
Kumar has said in his complaint filed at Town police station that he was in his room at Azad Nagar in Motihari when 20-25 people led by Rahul Pandey and Aman Bihari Vajpayee attacked him and tried to lynch him. He has also alleged that during the assault, the accused asked him why he had been speaking up against the Motihari university V-C and a few others. A purported video of the incident shows a person asking Kumar if he wanted to “become Kanhaiya Kumar”. He has also alleged that the accused tried to douse him with petrol.
The complaint noted that Kumar had shared a post on Facebook before he was attacked. Kumar has also alleged that Dainik Bhaskar staff Sanjay Kumar Singh called him “terrorist” for his social media posts.
Among those booked are Rahul Kumar Pandey, Sunny Vajpayee, Aman Bihari Vajpayee, Purushottam Mishra, Ravikesh Mishra, Gyaneshwar Gautam, Sanjay Kumar Singh — local bureau chief of Dainik Bhaskar — Dr Pawnesh Kumar Singh, Diwakar Singh, Dinesh Vyas, Jitendra Giri and Rakesh Pande. They have been booked under IPC sections 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 325 (voluntarily causing grievous hurt), 341 (wrongful restraint), 147 & 148 rioting, 149 (unlawful assembly), 365 ( kidnapping with intention of confinement) 448 (tresspass), 506 (criminal intimidation) and 120 B (criminal conspiracy).
Sources said that a prolonged face-off between the V-C and faculty members could also have played a role in the attack. Kumar was among several teachers who had been opposing many decisions of the university administration, the sources said. Mrityunjay said, “The post on Vajpayee may well have provided the immediate trigger.”