MUMBAI: A customer came to the rescue of a mobile shopowner who was attacked with a long, blunt object by a 28-year-old history-sheeter on August 11. The entire drama occurred within a fraction of seconds at 8pm when the eye-witness Naseeruddin Mansuri (45) went to recharge his mobile phone at Rajnish Singh Thakur’s Mahesh Communications situated in Chembur. Mansuri pounced on the accused Akram Khan when he saw him attacking Thakur repeatedly.
The drama that lasted hardly for seconds had a humanitarian touch shown by the eye-witness, a Muslim, who without a second thought of caring for his own life, charged at the attacker, another Muslim man. “When Khan attacked my brother with a weapon, security cameras within our shop captured the assailants and the heroic customer Mansuri who sprang to his rescue. My brother suffered severe injuries on his neck and hands.
The accused attacked my brother because we stood against druggists who have become a menace and extort money from shopkeepers,” victim’s brother Manish told TOI.
On Tuesday night, the attacker and his accomplices barged into his brother’s shop to take revenge because he had put up posters in May in Chembur locality warning that extortionists were threatening shop owners to make regular payments of Rs1,000 to them.
Meanwhile Khan (the attacker), according to the Tilak Nagar police, told he attacked Thakur because before the Ramzan month both brothers dragged him into their shop and repeatedly assaulted him. “Khan was unable to give the exact reason for his act. He just repeated that he wanted to take revenge for Thakur’s act in the past,” said Tilak Nagar police senior inspector Bhagwat Sonawane.
Local shopowners, friends and victim’s brother Manish lauded Mansuri’s helping act. “We praise Mansuri’s life saving act. But now he has gone to shell because of shock and fear thinking that the accused will target him. These druggists has become a menace in the locality.
They have crossed the limit of threatening the shopkeepers in the locality and extort money. No one dares to question them thinking they will create problem in their smooth running of business,” another shopowner from the locality told TOI.
Another shopowner (requesting anonymity) said the Thakur brothers have also put a board in the locality asking the shopkeepers to come forward to lodge complaints against druggists and their extortion. “In this case, Mansuri has shown his guts and saved a Hindu man at the hands of a Muslim attacker. The case will be forwarded to the zonal DCP to get Mansuri awarded for his bravery,” said Sonawane.
The senior inspector said the victim who is undergoing treatment were not ready to lodge a complaint initially. It was late at night when the complaint was lodged. “We have taken action against all the druggists in the locality. The attacker (Khan) is an externee and he has been booked in over 12 cases of drugs, assault and petty crimes he has committed in the locality,” the senior inspector said.