The Indian-origin author Salman Rushdie is on a ventilator after being attacked on the stage at the Chautauqua Institute in western New York on Friday. The 75-year-old author was stabbed in the neck and abdomen at a literary event. Rushdie was immediately airlifted to the hospital.
Andrew Wylie, the author’s agent, told the media that Rushdie suffered nerve damage in one arm and damage to his liver. The reports state that he is likely to lose one eye. He is currently undergoing treatment at the hospital.
Eyewitnesses said the incident occurred soon after Rushdie took his seat on the stage and was about to be introduced. The attacker rushed to the stage and stabbed the author multiple times.
Salman Rushdie has been receiving death threats for over a decade. Here’s why:
The Booker Prize winner was on the radar for over a decade after he launched his novel The Satanic Verses. This was Rushdie’s fourth novel, which was published in 1988. The book was banned in Iran, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and other countries as they found the novel disrespectful to the Prophet Mohammed.
Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the supreme leader of Iran, set up a reward for his assassination. He remained untraceable for almost ten years, frequently changing residences, and unable to reveal his residence to his children. Rushdie began to emerge from his life on the run after the Iranian government in 1998 said it won’t enforce that fatwa or edict.
Who attacked Salman Rushdie?
The attacker has been identified as Hadi Matar, a 24-year-old from New Jersey. The alleged attacker is currently in custody. He had a pass to be on the grounds of Chautauqua Institution’s lecture. He has not been formally charged. The charges will depend on Rushdie’s condition, said New York State Police.
New York State Police further said What we experienced at Chautauqua today is an incident unlike anything in our nearly 150 years of history. Our job right now is to continue to be a resource for Salman Rushdie’s family. We are working with the FBI to understand the motto of this attack, they added.
The authorities said that they are at a very early stage of the investigation. We are in the process of obtaining search warrants, they said.