Auto drivers gang up and assault passenger over Rs 2 change in Thane, crowd gets them detained
In yet another incident of rickshaw drivers taking law in their own hands, around eight to ten rickshaw drivers assaulted a passenger in Naupada, Thane on Tuesday evening after getting into an argument over tendering exact change.
According to preliminary information, the passenger and rickshaw driver got into an argument after the former failed to pay Rs 2 in exact change. The incident took place around 6 pm at Gaondevi near Naupada in Thane West.
On witnessing the heated exchange of words, other auto drivers in the vicinity come over and put the onus of tendering change on the passenger, Tushar Mhatre.
When Mhatre tried to reason with them, one of them assaulted him. Soon, others followed suit.
However, in a matter of seconds, passersby came to Mhatre’s rescue. By that time, the 28-year-old had sustained injuries on his neck and his t-shirt had been torn. They also cornered some of the auto drivers.
The crowd even stopped a passing patrolling van and demanded that the rickshaw drivers be arrested on the spot. When the cops tried to pacify them, some of them tried to damage the patrolling vehicle.
Later, as the crowd started getting out of hand, officials detained some of the rickshaw drivers.
“The cops tried to give a free pass to auto drivers initially. But as the crowd was getting violent, they detained at least two drivers from the spot,” Abhilash Sen, who was present on the spot, told Local Press Co.
No FIR has been registered as of publishing this.
Meanwhile, an official statement from the police is awaited.
In the month of June alone, two cases of auto drivers molesting unsuspecting female passengers have been reported in Thane. A total of four men have been detained in connection with the two cases.
Update: The rickshaw driver, identified as Mohammed Shaikh, has been booked under section 324 (voluntarily causing hurt by dangerous weapons) of the Indian Penal Code.