A Muslim man named Jamal Momin, a migrant laborer, was allegedly assaulted by four men in a moving train in West Bengal after he failed to answer their questions about Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the national anthem.
Momin was forced to say, "Bharat Mata Ki Jai."
His co-passengers did nothing to help him.
The man was reportedly on a moving train, on his way to Kaliachak in Malda district from Howrah on May 14, when he was assaulted, the Press Trust of India reported today.
The men asked him questions about Modi, the national anthem, and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. "Who is the Prime Minister of India? Who is the chief minister of Bengal? What is our national anthem?," they asked, The Times of India reported.
When he could not reply, the four men asked, "Who is Nawaz Sharif?"
Then, they asked him, "Do you offer namaz?"
When he replied in the affirmative, they said, "Shame on you. You offer namaz every day at a mosque but you don't know the national anthem."
The Muslim man was forced to say, "Bharat Mata Ki Jai" before the four men disembarked at Bandel.
Jamal was reportedly so scared that he did not even tell his wife about the incident. Five days later, on May 19, he left for Gujarat.
A local NGO, Bangla Sankriti Mancha, has used the videos taken by other passengers in the train to file a complaint at the Kaliachak Police Station and an investigation is underway.
Momin, who is now in Gujarat, told TOI, "I was not feeling well that day. So, I sat beside the window. But they forced me to leave that seat. I accepted it. The four youths then threw a volley of questions at me. I could answer some, but most I didn't know."
"They began to abuse me, my family and my religion. No one in the compartment objected to the abuse," the labourer said. "They roughed me up several times. I was reduced to tears. This went on till they got down at Bandel," he said.