Burning man grabs politician during live TV debate in India

By Arshiya Khullar, updated 10:09 AM EDT, Wed April 30, 2014

(CNN) — A man in India set himself on fire and then grabbed a politician during a live television debate this week in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, authorities said.

Police said Durgesh Kumar Singh came out of the crowd Monday as India’s state-owned television station Doordarshan recorded the debate at a park in Sultanpur, about 100 miles from the city of Lucknow.

He set himself ablaze with gasoline and threw himself on Kamruzzama Fauji, a local politician from the Bahujan Samaj Party. Singh died in the hospital a day later. Fauji is in critical condition with burns over 80% of his body, police said.

“People were just too shocked to know what was happening,” local photographer Pankaj Kumar Gupta told reporters.

The superintendent of police for Sultanpur district, Pratibha Ambedkar, was preparing for a visit by state Chief Minister, Akhilesh Yadav when she got a call from her office about a man threatening to set himself on fire. “By the time we reached there, he had already set himself ablaze,” Ambedkar told CNN.

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Categories: Asia, India

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