Salman Rushdie put on ventilator, says agent

New York, Aug 13 (IANS): Author Salman Rushdie, who was stabbed at a literary event in New York state, is currently on a ventilator and unable to speak, according to his agent.

In a statement late Friday night, Rushdie's agent Andrew Wylie said: "The news is not good... Salman will likely lose one eye; the nerves in his arm were severed; and his liver was stabbed and damaged," dpa news agency reported.

The attacker stormed the stage at the event held in the Chautauqua Institution attended by hundreds of people at around 11 a.m. on Friday and stabbed the 75-year-old Indian-born novelist, according to a police spokesman.

Several event staff and spectators then rushed the suspect and brought him to the ground and a police officer arrested the 24-year-old male identified as Hadi Matar from Fairview, New Jersey, the spokesman said.

Rushdie was treated by a doctor who was in the audience until rescue workers arrived and took the author to hospital by helicopter.

He was stabbed at least once in the neck and in the abdomen, authorities said

The attacker is thought to have acted alone, the spokesman added.

Rushdie was giving a lecture at a cultural centre as part of a series titled "More than Shelter" which intended to discuss the US as a safe haven for exiled writers and persecuted artists.

Because of his 1988 work "The Satanic Verses", a fatwa was issued against Rushdie by then-Iranian revolutionary leader Ayatollah Khomeini calling for the author's death.

Some Muslims felt their religious sensibilities were offended by the work.

Whether Friday's attack was at all related to the decades-old fatwa was unclear.

Rushdie's publisher last year said the fatwa has long since stopped affecting the author's life, and that he is no longer restricted in where he goes and no longer needs bodyguards.

The writer told German magazine Stern days earlier that he felt safe in the US, and that the threat was from a long time ago.

Writers including JK Rowling and Stephen King expressed their horror at the attack. US writers' organization PEN America said it was "reeling from shock and horror at word of a brutal, premeditated attack" on Rushdie.

"Salman Rushdie has been targeted for his words for decades but has never flinched nor faltered," PEN America chief executive Suzanne Nossel said in a statement.

Rushdie was born in Mumbai in 1947, the year of Indian independence.

He later studied history at Cambridge University in Britain.

He had his breakthrough as an author with the book "Midnight's Children", which was awarded the prestigious Booker Prize in 1981.

In it, he tells the story of India's detachment from the British Empire based on the life stories of protagonists who are born at the precise moment of independence and are endowed with supernatural abilities.

Rushdie has published more than two dozen fiction, non-fiction, and other writings overall.

His style is referred to as Magic Realism, in which realistic events are interwoven with fantastic elements.



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Comment on this article

  • David Pais, Mangalore

    Sat, Aug 13 2022

    peaceful, peaceful, peaceful, pieeeeece.......

    DisAgree [1] Agree [5] Reply Report Abuse

  • Observer, Mangalore

    Sat, Aug 13 2022

    Common in USA

    DisAgree [8] Agree [3] Reply Report Abuse

  • Shetty, Mangalore

    Sat, Aug 13 2022

    you missed to type "factor". Its "Common factor". But alas you will not type this...because every time this happens you are on denial mode..

    DisAgree [1] Agree [9] Reply Report Abuse


    Sat, Aug 13 2022

    if at all there are people who are peace loving, if they wont utter a they count!! ..society wont woke up ,community after country out for Bangladesh..disaster waiting..still community not ready to accept the problem lying within..

    DisAgree [1] Agree [11] Reply Report Abuse

  • B.S. Rai, Mangalore

    Sat, Aug 13 2022

    Salman Rushdie did not have a kind word to say about India He was in sync with his white friends in denigrating India so when sar tan Juda reaches him in a white country he should reflect.

    DisAgree [8] Agree [2] Reply Report Abuse

  • Sense_shetty, Mangalore

    Sat, Aug 13 2022

    Look what they do to people who express freely . Some people need to comment here.

    DisAgree [3] Agree [17] Reply Report Abuse

  • Shetty, Mangalore

    Sat, Aug 13 2022

    May be busy with preparations for tomorrow 14th Aug for independence day!

    DisAgree [1] Agree [6] Reply Report Abuse

  • prakash, Manipal

    Sat, Aug 13 2022

    It is an intriguing matter to be soul searched by all in humanity... Free speech must not be limited to politics alone... Constructive criticism should be allowed in religious topics too... All other religions except one are party for constructive criticism and satire related to it.... More horrifying is the way a 24 year old performed the very act of cruelty... I thought younger generations will be able to tower above the myths of religions....

    DisAgree Agree [10] Reply Report Abuse

  • Ganesh, Mangalore

    Sat, Aug 13 2022

    What about NUPUrs free speech? whta is your view on this.

    DisAgree Agree [5] Reply Report Abuse

  • Nithin, Bangalore/SA

    Sat, Aug 13 2022

    Religipn of peace...wonder what muslim countries got to say for this act.

    DisAgree [1] Agree [20] Reply Report Abuse

  • Deshbhakt, Mangalore

    Sat, Aug 13 2022

    Don't go international - we are still confused over Praveen/Fazil killings. Lets keep the home in order before commenting on what is going on abroad. Yes, the attack is unfortunate but we are not saints either.

    DisAgree [17] Agree [11] Reply Report Abuse

  • Sense_shetty, Mangalore

    Sat, Aug 13 2022

    atleast,we dont issues fatwas to those insult our gods .. and only thing if we do is react ..that too when there is a killing.

    DisAgree Agree [9] Reply Report Abuse

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