A 24-year-old journalist hailing from Kashmir and currently working with a national English daily in Pune was allegedly attacked by some local youths on Tilak Road on Thursday night.
The journalist, Jibran Nazir, filed a complaint against the assailants, but later withdrew it. Nazir tweeted: “I find no reason to believe that the attack on me last night, because I come from Kashmir, was an organised one. Thus, I withdrew my complaint against the accused. But, apparently, mob affiction is making inroads to Pune as well. @CPPuneCity please take notice (sic).”
When asked about the incident during the annual press conference on Friday, police officials refused to call it an incident of hate crime and said it was a “skirmish”. Meanwhile, even though Nazir withdrew his complaint, the police decided to take suo motu cognisance and lodged an offence in this case.
Deputy Commissioner of Police (zone II) Bachhan Singh said: “An offence under sections 279 (rash driving), 337 (causing hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others) and 323 (voluntarily causing hurt) of IPC will be lodged at Swargate police station.”
Police said Nazir was riding a motorcycle and had stopped at the red signal near Girija Hotel on Tilak Road around 10.45 pm, when a couple of youth on another two-wheeler started honking repeatedly. They allegedly started an argument with Nazir.
“My vehicle has a Himachal Pradesh registration number, so they started shouting that they will send me back to Himachal Pradesh… When I told them that I am from Jammu and Kashmir…they thrashed me… and said they will send me back to Kashmir. I went to Swargate police station to file a complaint. Later, when the cops produced the assailants, they apologised to me and promised to get my vehicle repaired. I do not feel it was an organised attack. So, I withdrew my complaint…I have suffered a minor fracture in the incident,” Nazir told The Indian Express.