London, September 22
A Punjab-born Sikh taxi driver has said that four white men assaulted him in Berkshire, England, and asked if he was a member of the Taliban militant group.
Vaneet Singh (41), from Tilehurst suburb of the Reading town, believes the four accused could have been Scottish or Irish.
Singh, who has been left bruised and battered after the incident, told the police that the men also stuck drugs up his nose, vandalised his taxi and tried to pull his turban off.
One of them had asked to be dropped in nearby Bramley after all four were picked up from a casino in Berkshire.
“After he got out, he came up to my window holding a black box of substance which I think was cannabis. He asked me to try it and I said it was against my religion and then he lifted up my face mask and forced it up to my nose. It left me feeling intoxicated,” Singh claimed.
Another man asked Singh to stop to urinate.
“He got out and asked to drive the car and I refused. Then he started trying to pull my taxi plate off. I tried to call the police but the network was very poor. Back in the car, they slid their fingers inside my turban and tried to pull it off,” Singh said.
“They also kicked and punched me in the back through the seat and kept tightening my safety belt. They said, ‘Are you Taliban?’ I said, ‘No, I’m a Sikh’, and told them it was a religious symbol and asked them not to touch my turban,” he added.
All three men got out at red traffic in Basingstoke, kicked the back of his car, leaving a dent and left.
Besides driving a cab, Singh also teaches tabla in Berkshire.
“I have neck pain and chest pain now and my body keeps vibrating. This was 100 per cent a racist attack. I am usually a friendly guy, always laughing but this has made me scared,” he added.
Thames Valley Police said they were investigating the case. No arrests had been made so far. IANS
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