The Delhi Police on Sunday arrested four more persons for the killing of Rinku Sharma, taking the total number of arrests made in the connection with the crime to nine, PTI reported.

The 25-year-old was allegedly stabbed by a group of people at a birthday party on the night of February 10. He succumbed to his injuries during treatment, and five people were arrested in connection with the case. The case was later transferred to the Crime Branch of the Delhi Police.

Additional Public Relation Officer (Delhi Police) Anil Mittal said the four new arrests were made after examining witnesses and analysing CCTV footage from the night of the cime, which showed the men attacking Sharma. The accused were identified as Deen Mohd (40), Dilshan (22), Fayaiz (21) and Faizan (21), all residents of Mangolpuri area in Delhi.

The police maintain that the incident took place after the accused allegedly got involved in an argument with Sharma over their eatery business, which was shut due to huge losses. But Sharma’s family and Hindutva groups claimed that he was killed because he was active in the donation drive for the Ram temple in Ayodhya.

They claimed that he was associated with the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh. The family also claimed that Sharma was repeatedly threatened in the past few months.

On February 12, the police tweeted details about the incident and specifically mentioned that any other motive alluded to it was “factually wrong”.

According to the police, both Sharma and the four accused had opened eateries in nearby areas of Rohini in October. However, both had to be closed down due to financial losses. The two parties blamed each other for the losses and often had heated arguments over the matter. On February 10, before leaving the birthday party, they slapped and then threatened each other.

Later, the four men went to Sharma’s house, where he and his elder brother were waiting with sticks. A fight ensued and led to the stabbing, the police said.

The Vishwa Hindu Parishad, meanwhile, claimed the murder was committed by “Islamic Jihadists”, and gave a three-day ultimatum to the police on February 15 to arrest about a dozen people who could be seen in CCTV footage of the incident. The Hindutva outfit also demanded that those arrested be presented in a court within 30 days and be hanged in six months.