Bhatkal Youth Assaulted While Traveling From Hyderabad; Police Accused of Shielding Culprits

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Two co-passengers asked his name and upon learning that Mujeeb was a Muslim, they allegedly started beating and abusing him, and they threatened to kill him

Team Clarion

BENGALURU – 36-year-old Mujibur Rehman, a resident of Bhatkal Hanifabad, was mercilessly beaten after he boarded a bus from Hyderabad to Mangalore on Sunday evening to reach Bhatkal.

After entering Karnataka and reaching near Gangavati, Mujib had told the bus conductor and driver that he had a fever and requested for a tablet. Two co-passengers asked his name and location and upon learning that Mujeeb was a Muslim from Bhatkal, they allegedly started beating and abusing him, and they threatened to kill him.

As per Mujeeb, the conductor gave him a tablet, which worsened his condition. Both passengers continued to attack him, and the driver and conductor allegedly supported them. Mujeeb managed to jump off the bus and escape, only to be beaten by locals in Gangavati who were allegedly incited by the two passengers, the driver, and the conductor.

“I was beaten with belt and stick. They heckled me and called me a thief'” Mujeeb recounted.

Mujeeb also told the media that after taking the fever pill, he felt numb and was no longer aware of the cruelty inflicted on him. When he got out of the bus and started running, he was not even aware of how mercilessly he was being beaten.

“I was not conscious due to the effect of the tablet and I don’t know whether the tablet given to me was a tablet for fever or something else,” Mujeeb said.

After escaping from there, some local Muslims helped him.

Around 4 PM on Tuesday, when Mujeeb reached the Bhatkal Government Hospital, his body was full of severe beating marks on his back and waist, with punch marks visible on his face and near his eyes.

As news spread, many people, including Mujeeb’s relatives, gathered outside the hospital, demanding strict action against the culprits. They learned that the bus involved had already left Bhatkal for Mangalore in the morning and was expected to return in the evening.

Angry people gathered at Qidwai Cross Road and near TFC hotel on the Bhatkal National Highway to stop the bus, but the police dispersed the crowd. As per the protesters, when the bus arrived, the police escorted it through Bhatkal, preventing the protesters from stopping it.

Angry protesters confronted the police when they foiled the protesters’ attempt to stop the bus in Bhatkal.

Protesters voiced their concerns, questioning how the police allowed the bus driver and conductor to leave without inquiring about the incident. They demanded to know why the police had not reviewed the CCTV footage of the bus, to clarify the incident.

While accusing the police of receiving bribe from the bus company, the protesters alleged that this was the reason the police provided protection to the bus, driver, and conductor, allowing them to escape without scrutiny.

Bhatkal Town Police Inspector Gopi Krishna urged the protesters to register their complaints at the police station instead of causing a disturbance on the highway.

The incident disrupted traffic for a while, but additional police forces eventually dispersed the protesters. Later, the protesters gathered at the local social organization Majlise Islah wa Tanzeem’s office, demanding justice for Mujeeb and support from the organization.

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