Madrid: Salman Rushdie has lost his sight in one eye and the use of one hand after the attack he suffered while preparing to deliver a lecture in the US’ New York state two months ago, his agent has confirmed, the media reported.
The 75-year-old author, whose received death threats from Iran in the 1980s after his novel ‘The Satanic Verses’ was published, was stabbed in the neck and torso as he came on stage to give a talk on artistic freedom at the Chautauqua Institution on August 12, The Guardian reported.
Until now, the full extent of Rushdie’s injuries had been unclear. But in an interview with Spain’s El Pais, Andrew Wylie explained how serious and life-changing the attack had been.
“(His wounds) were profound, but he’s (also) lost the sight of one eye,” said Wylie. “He had three serious wounds in his neck. One hand is incapacitated because the nerves in his arm were cut. And he has about 15 more wounds in his chest and torso. So, it was a brutal attack.”
The agent declined to say whether Rushdie was still in hospital, saying the most important thing was that the writer is going to live, The Guardian reported.
Wylie also said he and Rushdie had talked about the possibility of such an attack in the past. “The principal danger that he faced so many years after the fatwa was imposed is from a random person coming out of nowhere and attacking (him),” he said. “So, you can’t protect against that because it’s totally unexpected and illogical. It was like John Lennon’s murder.
The man accused of stabbing Rushdie pleaded not guilty to second-degree attempted murder and assault charges when he appeared in court on August 18.
Hadi Matar, 24, was arraigned during a brief hearing in Chautauqua county district court on an indictment returned by a grand jury that charged him with one count of second-degree attempted murder and one count of second-degree assault.