Ajmer dargah cleric arrested for call to 'behead' Nupur Sharma

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Jaipur: A cleric of the Ajmer dargah, who on camera allegedly offered his house to anyone who beheads now-suspended BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma for her controversial remark against Prophet Mohammad, has been arrested, police said on Wednesday.

A police official said the video purportedly showing 'khadim' Salman Chisti was shot before tailor Kanhaiya Lal's murder in Udaipur on June 28 but surfaced on the internet later.

Officials also said the cleric is a "history-sheeter" and that he might have recorded the video in an inebriated condition. The Ajmer police had registered an FIR against him on Monday night.

"Salman Chisti was caught last night (Tuesday)... He is a history-sheeter at the Dargah police station," Dargah police station SHO Dalbeer Singh Foujdar said.

Ajmer Assistant Superintendent of Police Vikas Sangwan said Chisti was caught at his residence in Khadim mohalla.

He said the video was shot before June 28 and was leaked later.

"Prima facie, he made the video in inebriated condition. He is being interrogated further," the ASP added.

In the video, the cleric is purportedly seen and heard announcing he would gift his house to anyone who brings Sharma's head to him. Chishti is also allegedly heard saying he would shoot her dead for insulting the Prophet.

"You have to give a reply to all Muslim countries. I am saying this from Ajmer, Rajasthan, and this message is from Huzur Khwaja Baba ka darbar," he purportedly says in the video, referring to the Sufi shrine that sees many Hindu visitors, apart from Muslim devotees.

Last week, four people were arrested in connection with another provocative speech allegedly delivered at the main gate of the Ajmer dargah on June 17.

Though that video was in circulation earlier, the arrests were made following the killing of Kanhaiya Lal by two men, who said they were avenging an insult to Islam.

The two men were, however, caught by the police when they were fleeing on a motorcycle in Rajsamand. In all, five people have been arrested in connection with the murder case, which is being handled by the National Investigation Agency.

The murder sparked a massive outrage in various states. PTI

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