WhatsApp group linked to Amravati chemist Umesh Kolhe's killing: Police
- A chemist was killed in Maharashtra for allegedly supporting Nupur Sharma
- Sharma had made controversial remarks about Prophet Muhammed, sparking nation-wide protests
- Five have been arrested in the Amravati case
Umesh Kolhe, a chemist in Maharashtra's Amravati district, was killed on June 21 for allegedly supporting former BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma. Five persons have been arrested so far in this connection, an official said.
The incident in Maharashtra took place about a week before two men beheaded Kanhaiya Lal, a tailor in Rajasthan's Udaipur for posting on social media in support of Nupur Sharma, who made a controversial remark against Prophet Muhammed, sparking nation-wide protests.
"Five persons have been arrested in connection with the murder of the chemist and a search is on to trace the prime accused Irfan Khan (32), who runs a NGO," Amravati commissioner of police Dr Aarti Singh said on Saturday.
"Kolhe ran a medical store in Amravati city. He had allegedly shared a post on some WhatsApp groups in support of Nupur Sharma for her comments. He even mistakenly shared the post in a WhatsApp group in which some Muslims were also members, including his customers," an official of the City Kotwali police station said.
A sixth person accused in the case, identified as Yusuf Khan Bahadur Khan, is a vet. He was arrested on Friday night.
Deputy Commissioner of Police (Amravati city) Vikram Sali on Saturday said, “The motive behind the murder is for seeking revenge for the post made by him (Kolhe) in support of Nupur Sharma.”
Talking about Khan's role in the killing, the officer revealed that a WhatsApp group was created against Kolhe.
“Khan had made a post on a WhatsApp group against Kolhe saying he was circulating posts supporting Nupur Sharma. This provoked the accused against Kolhe and they decided to murder him. So, Khan instigated the other accused.”
The 44-year-old was produced before a magistrate court which sent him in police custody till July 4.