Ghazala Ahmad for Maktoob Media
A 36-year-old Muslim man was brutally assaulted by a violent mob in Meerut’s Daurala town, Uttar Pradesh, due to his identity.
On January 28, Shamsher, a cab driver as usual, started his day. He left his home in Delhi’s Sultanpuri, picked up two passengers—a Hindu middle-aged couple from Uttam Nagar—and began the journey towards Dehradun.
Just as he reached Daraula town, he encountered a white Fortuner car. The driver, Shamsher says, was adamant about not giving him the side to pass.
That’s when a verbal scuffle broke out between him and the man in the Fortuner’s driver seat.
Within moments, three men emerged from their car, pulled Shamsher out of his cab, and demanded his Aadhar card and name.
Upon discovering his Muslim identity, Shamsher, the driver, and two boys proceeded to assault him with their bare hands, kicking him and slamming his head against the car’s bonnet.
As they beat him, they yelled, “Tu musalman hai, Abhi btate hain tujhe – you are a Muslim, now we will teach you,” while making a call on a mobile phone.
Speaking to Maktoob, Shamsher said, “I was only asking him to give me space on the road, and I was beaten for my identity. They inquired about my name and asked for my Aadhar card before they started thrashing me.”
He mentioned, “They made a phone call, and two men with hockey bats and wooden sticks arrived in less than two minutes.”
Shamsher was beaten continuously for around an hour. He stated, “They threatened to take my life,” and “I don’t remember anything because I had fainted after being beaten up.”
“I regained consciousness after an hour, and they all escaped,” he said.
Shamsher alleged that the bystanders didn’t offer any help or intervene. However, the passengers he was carrying stayed back as their belongings were still in his car.
He added, “After regaining my senses, I was unable to move or drive, so I called my relative, who is also a driver, to drop the couple back at their home.”
The cab driver made multiple calls to the nearest police station but didn’t receive a response. Additionally, he called his family members and an ambulance himself.
The family arrived earlier and took him back to his home in Sultanpur after a private hospital in Ghaziabad refused to treat him, citing a police case.
He was then taken to a nursing home in Sultanpuri, where he underwent examination, had his body parts x-rayed, and received the necessary treatment.
Eye-witness confirms horrific attack
Maktoob interviewed an eyewitness to the incident, the female passenger in Shamsher’s cab. She verified Shamsher’s ordeal.
Requesting anonymity, she stated, “We were terrified; the mob was beating Shamsher brutally. It was horrifying to watch.”
“At one moment, I feared the mob would kill him.”
The woman mentioned that she volunteered and urged the lady in the Fortuner car to intervene and prevent the men from her family, but she didn’t take action.
“There was so much ruckus and violence happening that we couldn’t make a call to the police or note the number of the car,” the woman said.
“We stayed until he gained consciousness, he even arranged a vehicle for us to reach back home,” she added.
The Hindu couple is a regular customer of Shamsher and the woman swore off his “calm behaviour” and “good service.”
“We often book his cab for travel, nothing of this has happened ever. He is soft-spoken and very trustworthy,” the woman remarked.
The couple however want to maintain a distance from Shamsher’s police case stating, “We don’t want to invite trouble being involved in the case.”
“They were violent and can also attack us if we intervene, so we won’t,” said the woman.
FIR filed, No arrest yet
The Daurala police also registered an FIR against an “unknown individual” on 31 January, 3 days after Shamsher submitted his complaint against “5 individuals” for assaulting and threatening to kill him.
That FIR has been registered under IPC 506 (criminal intimidation) 323 (voluntarily causing hurt) and 504(insulting with an intent to provoke).
There have been no arrests or progress in the case so far, on February 2nd, until this report was filed.
Vishnu Kaushik, Station House Officer, Daurala Police Station told Maktoob, “We have called the victim for a medical checkup tomorrow and the case will be updated accordingly.”
When informed about Shamsher’s ordeal of 5 individuals being involved in the assault, the officer said, “We will update the FIR after the investigation.”
Shamsher said that he could recognise the men who were part of the mob, and “I assume that two of them were locals from the town Daurala, as they came within 2 minutes after the mob called him.”
He said that he was shaken by what had happened and he still has marks, wounds and pain from the “brutal attack.”
“I was only targeted for my identity as they started beating me after identifying me as a Muslim after they checked my Aadhar card”, he added.