Racist thugs | 

Shop assistant brutally beaten by Navan gang determined to keep business open after local support

'After this attack I was thinking close the business, get out and move on, absolutely I was thinking like that’

Amjhad Khan

Gerry HandSunday World

This is the brave shop assistant who feared he would be killed when he was brutally beaten by a group of thugs in the middle of Navan, county Meath, last Sunday night.

Amjhad Khan a native of Pakistan who works in the Day Today store in the centre of the town, said, 'This is the first physical attack but the verbal abuse is happening to us all the time, all the time, this is not the first time and it is always the same gang.

'On Sunday I could see them hanging around the street from six o clock, they were confronting bouncers on a few different pubs and that sort of carry on so I was very concerned from that stage,

'After a couple of hours they targeted our customers, they began shouting at them and intimidating them as they went in and out of the shop, and they were roaring in at me calling me a Paki b*****d.

‘They were clearly drunk and one of them was still carrying a full bottle of vodka so I was worried he would use that as a weapon.

'I am not sure if they used the bottle to do it or not but the shop window was smashed and they came in and started throwing food items all around the shop.

''I asked them to stop behaving in that way and they came at me. I was knocked to the ground and they started kicking me on the back, the face and the head.

‘I was terrified I was going to die. There were three of them in the group, two guys and a girl.

'I don't know how long they were beating me but it seemed to go on forever, and it was only when they stopped that I managed to call the guards.

'I was brought to hospital and detained overnight, I had a CT scan on Monday and they discharged me and said they would send on the results.

'I haven't felt up to going back to work yet but maybe over the weekend I will, I am still pretty badly shaken up but I won't let thugs stop me earning a living.'

Shop manager Ali Khan is also determined to keep the business open.

'After this attack I was thinking close the business, get out and move on, absolutely I was thinking like that, but the next day the amount of people we know from Navan that called in and said they were supporting us made me change my mind they really encouraged me to stay open.

'We are nearly three years here and we are abused regularly but I understand that can happen anywhere. This crossed the line though.

'To be honest I was shocked at the amount of people who came in on the Monday, a lot who were not our customers, and said, 'Look we are with you on this', that made my mind up to stay.'

A Garda spokesperson said, ' Gardaí attended the scene of a public order incident at a business premises in Navan, Co. Meath, at approximately 9.25 pm on Sunday the 15thJanuary 2023.

'A male was injured during the course of the incident and taken to hospital by Ambulance for treatment of his injuries which are understood to be non-life threatening.

'The window of the business premises was damaged during the course of the incident.

'A man (20s) was arrested and subsequently charged in relation to the incident. He is due to appear before Trim District Court on 24th January 2023.'

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