After the elderly man reprimanded a 10- year- old boy from a neighbouring society for cycling within the premises, an angry mob of adults, including his father, beat him with belts and a metal rod
Ravikumar Arya (60) had a comfortable job driving for the secretary of a posh residential society in Andheri, and all he wanted was to avoid unnecessary trouble with the boss. He wouldn’t have imagined the crisis he was inviting for himself when he scolded a 10-year-old boy from the neighbouring society for scratching his boss’s car.
The boy left in a huff, but returned within minutes, this time with a mob of angry adults, including his father, who brutally thrashed Arya with a belt and a metal rod. Not only did they leave the senior citizen with a lacerated forehead and broken hand, the assaulters also threatened to kill him if he complained about the incident.
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CCTV cameras at Adelphi CHS capture the blow-by-blow assault on Ravikumar Arya (extreme left) by a gang of three
The incident took place around 7.30 pm on October 1, when Arya was waiting in the parking lot of Adelphi Cooperative Housing Society, located in Shastri Nagar, near Lokhandwala, Andheri West. The 10-year-old boy was cycling dangerously close to his employer’s Honda City and finally scratched it.
“I am responsible for anything that happens to the car. I politely requested the kid to ride his bicycle outside our society premises, but he began to hurl abuses at me,” said Arya, who finally told the boy off for his bad manners.
“He left the society, only to come back after 15 minutes with a group of three people, who started punching me and hit me a belt. They also attacked me with a rod and left me bleeding,” the elderly driver recalled.
The boy on the cycle leads his father and his accomplices to the driver
Two watchmen from the building attempted to intervene, but the men turned on them as well, and one of the watchmen ran to inform the society residents of the brawl. “I was shocked to see the way in which the 60-year-old was being attacked with belts and a rod. I tried to stop the group and begged them to leave, but they did not listen,” said the second watchman, Ashok Mehetar.
Immediately after the incident, someone called the police, while the bruised and bleeding Arya was taken to Cooper Hospital, where he received five stitches on his forehead and his fractured right hand was put in a cast. “Arya had a wound on his forehead and we stitched it. His right hand had been dislocated from the joint and is in a plaster. He was kept under observation for four hours to ensure there was no critical head injury,” said a doctor at the hospital.
With a fractured right hand, Arya is currently unable to work and is resting at home. His employer, Raman Trikha, who is the secretary of the society, said, “The incident was inhuman. How can anyone have the guts to enter our society and thrash the driver? The police should take action and make it clear that such incidents will not be tolerated.”
The police have arrested one person with the help of CCTV footage of the incident. The other two are yet to be nabbed
However, Arya initially refused to file a complaint, fearing a worse fate at the hands of his assaulters. “Even in hospital, Arya received threats from them. They told him they would kill him if he told the police about the attack.When some of us went to the police station, we were also threatened. Cowing under pressure, Arya decided not to file a complaint, but we decided to support him,” said a resident who did not wish to be named. Forty residents had signed a petition asking the Amboli police to register the case.
The elderly Ravikumar Arya (left) received five stitches on his forehead and suffered a fracture in his right hand. One of the society’s watchmen, Ashok Mehetar tried to stop the angry mob, but was barely successful
FIR after a week
The FIR was finally registered yesterday, nearly a week after the incident, after the society members submitted the petition to the police, along with CCTV footage of the incident. “We took a collective decision to approach the police because such incidents cannot be ignored. The driver could have died,” said another resident.
Senior Police Inspector Ramesh Khadtare from the Amboli police station, confirmed that an FIR had been filed against three accused under Sections 324 (Voluntarily causing hurt by dangerous weapons or means), 504 (Intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of the peace) and 34 (Acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention) of the Indian Penal Code. One of the accused seen in the CCTV footage was also arrested.
“We have arrested 24-year-old Mohammad Hasan from his home in the neighbouring society, Swiss Corner, on Wednesday, around 4.30 pm. The other two accused in the case couldn’t be found at their homes but we will arrest them soon,” said Khadtare.
- Inputs by Sadaguru Pandit