Jailed: 13 Islamists who chopped off professor’s hand in India

Indian professor TJ Joseph suffered bodily harm in an attack by an Islamist group in 2010. (Courtesy: NDTV)

Ten suspected Islamic extremists are facing eight years in prison for chopping off the hand of a college professor in 2010 in the Indian state of Kerala, the local NDTV reported.

The court also sentenced three others connected with the case to two years’ imprisonment, as well as imposing a fine of 800,000 rupees ($16,370) on all 13 individuals, which will be paid to the victim.

The thirteen individuals, all of whom are aligned with the Muslim Popular Front of India (PFI), attacked Joseph as he returned from Sunday mass at a local church.

A special National Investigative Agency court has sentenced the individuals, who accuse the professor of making a blasphemous reference to the Prophet Muhammad in an exam paper he set for his students.

The court ruled in favor of the prosecution, citing proof beyond all doubt that the accused plotted to kill the professor by inflicting grievous injuries.

The victim, Prof. TJ Joseph, taught at Newman College, a Roman Catholic institution of higher education in the Idukki district of Kerala.

His daughter Amy spoke to the BBC, saying "We think that this attack has happened because of a misunderstanding in the exam paper which did not contain any derogatory reference to the Prophet Muhammad".

"My father is still in intensive care but the family forgives his attackers", she said.

She added that "He has lost his right arm below the elbow and requires more surgery.”

The case’s legal wrangling began in July 2013 and has included four defense witnesses, more than 950 documents from the prosecution and 30 from the defense, as well as over 200 material objects.

Several of the convicts have been imprisoned for five years already, and are expected to serve the full terms of their sentences.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:46 - GMT 06:46
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