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One held as Indian's killing sparks outrage on FB

world Updated: Dec 27, 2011 18:46 IST
indians in uk

A 17-year-old British youth has been arrested over the fatal shooting of Indian student Anuj Bidve in Manchester, triggering condemnation on social networking website Facebook.

Bidve, 23, was part of a group of nine men and women -- all Indian students -- visiting the city for a short break for Christmas. He was a postgraduate student in micro-electronics at Lancaster University.

The arrested youth was being questioned, said BBC.

Hailing from Pune, Bidve was shot in the head while walking from his hotel in Salford area towards the Manchester city centre around 1.30am. He died at a hospital a short while later.

Two men walked up to Bidve and his friends outside an eatery. After a short exchange of words, one man pulled out a pistol and shot the Indian student in the side of the head at point-blank range. The two fled, leaving Bidve dying in the street in a pool of blood.

Manchester police chief superintendent Kevin Mulligan said it was an "awful, unprovoked attack on a young student".

Witnesses said the attack was not a robbery or racially motivated.

The gunman was a white man in his mid 20s, of slim build and wearing a grey top. The other man had a heavier build and wore a black jacket.

Bidve's friends were being looked after in a "safe place" by police.

Shocked neighbours told the Manchester Evening News they no longer felt safe in their own homes.

Donna Wilson, a 30-year-old mother of two young children, said: "We were in bed when it happened and I woke up and saw the forensics people outside. It's right there, practically on my own doorstep. You don't feel safe in your own home."

"I was up at six o'clock and saw all the police out of the window. I felt sick when I heard what happened. It's disgusting," Kerry Thompson, who has lived there for 11 years, was quoted as saying.

A university spokeswoman said counselling and support was being organised for the friends who were described as "deeply upset", reported Sky News.

Bidve's father Subhash turned to Facebook to seek assistance: "Please help in getting Anuj's dead body back to India."

The social networking website has been flooded with comments condemning the killing.

Rakesh Sonawane, a resident of Pune, who now stays in Manchester, described on Facebook what he saw at the spot.

"In the early hours of the morning - I arrived at a scene i will never forget. Anuj Bidve had been shot in the head - for no reason what so ever. I feel like i myself did not do enough to help Anuj this morning - i feel that neither did the police and ambulance crews."

He added: "I personally feel disgusted that someone from our town could do such a thing to a visitor of our city."

Sunit Parab from Glasgow said it was "really a sad incident to have happened".

Yas Miin, another Facebook user, termed the killers "sick scumbags" and sought their hanging.

Manchester residents Becca Cloughley Lewtas said she was "ashamed that someone from my city would do such a vile act".

"I truly hope they catch the vermin who did this to you," she wrote further.

Shripad Sathe, however, opposed taking the body back to India.

"Whilst I did not know this gentleman before, might I also, with due respect to everyone, also suggest last respects might be paid in the UK, rather than carry him (all with paperwork etc which is mentally traumatic) to India? Sincere apologies if this hurts anyone," Sathe wrote on the website.

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