STF commandos assault doctor
[TamilNet, Saturday, 13 March 1999, 15:16 GMT]
Muslims in the eastern town of Natpuddimunai closed shops and boycotted public offices today to protest against the Special Task Force (STF) for severely assaulting a doctor last night. Natpuddimunai is a Muslim majority township near Kalmunai, 40 kilometers south of Batticaloa.
An STF commando who was riding a motorcycle last night around 7.30 p.m on the road from Natpuddimunai towards Chavalakkadai had hit a speed bump and fallen by the side when Dr.Mohammed Mohaji who was passing by had tried to help the man get on to his feet.
The STF commando, however, had started assulting the doctor as soon as he had got up.
Other STF personnel who arrived on the scene had joined in the assault, despite being told by residents that thier victim was a doctor.
Later the STF commandos had dragged Dr.Mohaji to a house nearby where they had beaten him up further, forcing him to sign a statement that he had sustained the injuries in an accident.
The STF had also forcibly taken money from Dr.Mohaji for the damages to the commando's motorbike.
The doctor meanwhile had fainted due to the severe assault.
A Muslim government official in the area said that the STF commando whom Dr.Mohaji had tried to help last night was drunk and was riding a motorcycle that had been taken from a local village officer (Grama Sevaka).
He said that the other STF personnel were also inebriated.
Dr.Mohaji has been hospitalised in Kalmunai.
Natpuddimunai was formerly the seat of the Tamil Vanniya chieftans of Kalmunai.