The writer’s representative reported that the author of ‘The Satanic Verses’ could lose an eye, has severed nerves in one arm and suffered liver damage.

British-American writer of Indian descent Salman Rushdie underwent hours of surgery and is on a ventilator after he was stabbed in the neck and torso onstage during a conference in New York, Reuters reported.

“The news is not good,” reported Andrew Wylie, his literary agent. “Salman will probably lose an eye, had the nerves in his arm severed and was stabbed in the liver.”

The attack came when a man ran up to the stage where Rushdie was standing and lunged at him. While the attacker was immobilized and detained by the Police, the writer was attended by assistants and authorities on stage. Later, Rushdie was evacuated to a medical facility by helicopter .

According to the troop commander of the New York State Police, Eugene Staniszewski, the suspect has been identified as Hadi Matar, 24, from the state of New Jersey. He added that police are working with the FBI and local authorities to determine his motives, and collaborating with the district attorney’s office to determine what charges the suspect will face as the investigation progresses.

His book ‘The Satanic Verses’, published in 1988, caused great controversy in the Muslim world, due to the supposed irreverence with which the figure of the Prophet Mohammed is treated and was branded as blasphemous. The work was banned in Iran, and a year after its release, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the then religious leader of the Islamic Republic, read a religious edict, or fatwa, calling for the writer’s execution.