A Class 9 student shot at his schoolmate over a trivial dispute in a Uttar Pradesh town, police said Thursday. The victim is battling for life at a hospital while the attacker has run away.

Ashu Kumar (name changed), 14, fired at Sanjay Kashyap, 16, in Arnia town of Bulandshahr district Wednesday. Arnia is about 29 km from Bulandshahr town.

Both boys study in the Muni Inter College in Bulandshahr, some 400 km from Lucknow. Sanjay is in Class 10.

"Investigations reveal that both students had a verbal duel while playing in the school ground. Later, on the pretext of playing a cricket match, Ashu asked Sanjay to come to the outskirts of Kamalpur village and shot at him with a country-made pistol," police inspector Rameshwar Kumar told reporters in Bulandshahr.

"A case was registered against Ashu after the victim's family approached us," he added.