BEGUSARAI: In a suspected case of hate crime, an inebriated man here asked a street vendor his name and then shot him in the back on learning that he is a Muslim, police said on Monday.
The suspect, Rajiv Yadav, also asked the man, Mohammed Qasim, to go to Pakistan, they said. On the compliant of Qasim, a case has been registered against Yadav, who is absconding, Station House Officer Neeraj Kumar Singh said.
"The incident took place at Kumbhi village in Cheria Bariyarpur police station area of the district on Sunday. An FIR has been registered and search is on for Rajiv Yadav. We are making efforts to bring the accused to book at the earliest," he said.
A video of Qasim, who sells detergents to make a living, expressing his ordeal while undergoing treatment at a hospital, has gone viral on social media.
The clip shows Qasim alleging that the man fired at him in an inebriated state after asking him his name.
"I was on my daily round when the attacker stopped me and asked me my name. When I replied, he exclaimed - you are a Muslim. What are you doing here? You should go to Pakistan. He, thereafter, whipped out a pistol and opened fire. The bullet hit me in my back. His firearm had just one bullet. As he proceeded to load more ammunition, I shoved him away and ran for my life," Qasim, who is in his 30s, alleged, adding that bystanders did not come to his rescue.
CPI leader Kanhaiya Kumar, who had contested from Begusarai in the Lok Sabha elections but lost by a huge margin to BJP's Giriraj Singh, said leaders who spread hate for political gains were to be blamed for the incident.
"For such incidents, leaders and their cronies who spread hate for their political gains are responsible. We will not rest until the guilty are punished," he tweeted.