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Brave Indian-origin Shopkeeper in UK fights off Robber with Vodka Bottle and a Chair

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London, May 9, 2017: A brave Indian-origin shopkeeper and his teenage son in the UK fought off an knife-wielding robber using a bottle of vodka and a chair.

Dramatic CCTV footage shared by shopkeeper Anil Velji with police showed a man lunging towards him wielding a knife in a convenience store in Oldham, Greater Manchester, only for Velji to fight back.

The 40-year-old attempted to fend off his attacker with the spirit bottle before falling to the ground, the Daily Mail reported on Monday.

He kicked the robber from the floor as he continued to come towards him, and managed to pick up a chair behind the shop counter and fight back.

Quickly the man retreated and fled the scene, with Velji giving chase with a piece of wood.

The incident happened on April 23 at the Premier Convenience on Manchester Street.

Velji said that the man had entered the store a few minutes earlier and had been “eyeing up” the spirits.

He said: “I asked him what he was interested in, he told me he didn’t have enough money for the expensive stuff and kept looking.”

“I kept serving customers as he did, he was waiting for them to leave and the shop to be empty. I picked up a bottle of vodka for him and turned around to put it in the till, I heard a noise behind me and the man had pulled out a knife and was coming at me behind the counter.”

“My 16-year-old son was right there with me. I tried to hit him with the bottle of vodka and tripped over, I kicked him from the ground and then picked up a chair behind the counter and defended myself with it. I hit the panic button and the man ran off.”

The police reached the store within a minute of his hitting the button but it was too late, the robber had fled, according to the report.

Neither Velji or his son were injured, except for a few bruises.

Velji said: “My son was in shock and couldn’t sleep for a few days. We’ve only been here five months and nothing like this has ever happened before.”

A spokesman for Greater Manchester Police confirmed they were aware of the incident and the video and appealed for information. (IANS)

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Government ends Haj subsidy as part of a new policy

Announcing the decision, Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said it was in line with the government's agenda to empower minorities without appeasing them.

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A total of 1.75 lakh Indian Muslims can go for Haj this year. Wikimedia Commons
A total of 1.75 lakh Indian Muslims can go for Haj this year. Wikimedia Commons
  • The government had drafted the policy after the Supreme Court asked it in 2012 to withdraw it gradually by 2022
  • The government would utilise the funds saved from withdrawing the subsidy for the education of minorities, particularly girls
  • This year, the highest number of Indian pilgrims are likely to go for the pilgrimage

The central government on Tuesday said it has decided to withdraw subsidy given to hundreds and thousands of Muslims for the annual Haj pilgrimage.

Announcing the decision, Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said it was in line with the government’s agenda to empower minorities without appeasing them.

“This is part of our policy to empower minorities with dignity and without appeasement,” Naqvi told reporters here.

He said the government would utilise the funds saved from withdrawing the subsidy for the education of minorities, particularly girls.

Also Read: Muslim women can now travel to Haj without Mahram

The government had drafted the policy to abolish the Haj subsidy in a phased manner after the Supreme Court asked it in 2012 to withdraw it gradually by 2022.

This year, the highest number of Indian pilgrims are likely to go for the pilgrimage after Saudi Arabia increased India’s quota by 5,000.

A total of 1.75 lakh Indian Muslims can go for Haj this year. IANS

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