Shankar allegedly superimposed a picture of the Buddha on the Kaaba, a sacred site in Islam.

Indian embassy in Riyadh takes up case of Telangana man arrested for blasphemous FB post
news News Wednesday, January 04, 2017 - 07:40

More than a month after a Telangana man from Jagtial was arrested by the Riyadh police for a 'blasphemous' Facebook post; there may be hope for him as the Centre has taken notice of his case.

Replying to a query on the case on Tuesday, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj tweeted, “I asked our ambassador in Saudi Arabia to take up Ponnam's case with the government."

According to reports, 38-year-old Shankar, an agricultural engineer, allegedly superimposed an image of Buddha over Islam's holy site, something that the country takes seriously. 

Considered the most sacred place in Islam, the Kaaba is a black structure that is situated in the centre of the Grand Mosque in Mecca. 

Shankar posted the photo on November 12.

He was working on a farm in Tameer district of Al-Majmaah, when he was reportedly rounded up by the police on November 21.

Since then, his family in Telangana has been trying to get him back.

"He calls once in a week and he also cries. He says that he is scared and that no one is there for him. He says it very tough. We are also helpless, and we also break down every time he calls," his brother, Rajender, had earlier told TNM.

Read - Telangana man arrested in Riyadh for 'blasphemous' FB post, family begs for safe return

Speaking to TOI on the latest development, Rajender said that the family had got a call from embassy officials in Saudi Arabia, who asked them "not to be worried."