x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Bootlegging brawl victim files medical report

The second man who says he was injured in a fatal 2009 bootlegging brawl has submitted his medical reports to the court. The report is being used to bolster a Dh1.5 million claim for injuries.

DUBAI // Lawyers for the second man who filed a Dh1.5 million compensation claim for injuries in a fatal bootlegging brawl involving 17 convicted murderers submitted his medical reports to the Sharjah Court of First Instance this morning.

Shahid Iqbal had a 40 per cent disability in one hand, and a 10 per cent disability in the other, according to the reports.

"My brother's medical report was submitted to the court," said Mushtaq Ahmed, who filed the suit claiming compensation for injuries he and his brother, Mr Iqbal, sustained in the 2009 fight in Sharjah, which killed another man.

Last year, the 17 convicts were spared the death sentence after paying Dh3.4 million blood money to the deceased victim's family. But prosecutors appealed against the verdict at the Federal Supreme Court, urging it to take into account injuries sustained by three other men in the brawl, and further charges of possessing and selling alcohol.

The convicts were then sentenced to six months - less time than they had already served - for selling alcohol illegally. But they remained in jail pending the outcome of the civil case for injuries.

At a hearing last month, court doctors said Mr Ahmed had also suffered 30 per cent disability on his left hand and 10 per cent on his right hand. The medical report for Mr Iqbal, who lives in Pakistan, was submitted to the court today after it was attested by the UAE embassy in Pakistan.

The next hearing is scheduled for September 4.

"The other party has submitted their memorandum," said Bindu Suresh Chettur of Mohammed Salman Advocates and Legal Consultants, a firm appointed by the Indian government to defend the 17 convicted men. "We will be challenging their report and submitting our defence at the next hearing."

The defence team said it was confident that a verdict will be pronounced in the hearing following the September 7 proceedings, which would take place exactly a year after the convicts were nearly freed and ordered to be deported by the appeals court. The men's families have been eagerly awaiting their release and return home. Most of them are from the Indian state of Punjab.

pkannan@thenational.ae