Indian student, who was stabbed in head at US gym, succumbs to injuries
The accused told the lawmakers that he had never spoken to Varun before the incident on October 29, adding that ‘someone’ told him that the latter was ‘threatening’.
Representational Image (iStock)
AN INDIAN student, who was horribly attacked at a fitness centre in Indiana state of the US last month, has succumbed to his injuries in a hospital on Wednesday (8). Varun Raj Pucha, 24, was stabbed in his head by Jordan Andrade, also 24, police said.
The victim was a student of computer science at Valparaiso University which regretted the incident by saying in a statement, “It is with heavy hearts that we share the passing of Varun Raj Pucha. Our campus community has lost one of its own, and our thoughts and prayers go out to Varun’s family and friends as we mourn this devastating loss.”
The accused was charged with attempted murder and aggravated battery. He reportedly told the police that the Indian “was going to assassinate” him, newly filed charges in the case said.
Andrade also told the lawmakers that he had never spoken to Varun before the incident on October 29, adding that “someone” told him that the latter was “threatening”.
Police said staff members at the gym had indicated that Varun was a regular visitor and generally kept a low profile.
Andrade said that he found Varun “a little weird” when he walked into the fitness centre’s massage room and saw him there, the police added. He reportedly felt threatened by the Indian student and reacted accordingly. According to Andrade, he “just reacted”.
He also said that Varun was sitting during their altercation and did not initiate any physical attack. According to him, the only time a physical contact took place was when Varun tried to push him away after he had attacked him.
Andrade said he acted in self-defence, projecting himself as a “defensive fighter” who eliminated a threat with a knife. He said he pulled out the weapon, which he uses as a tool to open boxes at his workplace, from his pocket.
While he did not remark on the specifics of the attack, the police said it was in the head.
A memorial service for the victim will be held on his university’s campus on November 16.
“Our university gives the family and friends of Varun Raj Pucha our deepest condolences. Our thoughts are with his family, and we pray for their healing,” the university said.
Varun hailed from Khammam district of the southern Indian state of Telangana and started his studies in the US in August last year.