x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 21 January 2018

UAE road-rage victim given time off work to recover from attack

The Indian who was the subject of an assault captured on video had worked for his company for 20 years and 'never had any trouble' before the incident, colleagues say.

DUBAI // The Indian driver who was assaulted by a government official has been given a leave of absence from his job.

"He is a good man and never had a problem ever before this," said a manager at Modern Stationery, which owns the van the victim was driving.

"He was working here for 20 years. He is very upset, so he has been given leave to take rest and stay at home."

He said the company was not willing to comment further. "The case is still under way, so no one can say anything," he added.

Dr Norma Cairns, a psychologist at the American Centre for Psychiatry and Neurology in Dubai, said victims of such assaults could easily suffer from depression.

"In general cases of this kind of abuse, the victim could be suffering from things like anxiety, depression, very low self-esteem, and sleep deprivation due to depression," she said.

"With psychology you can have 10 people experience the exact same form of abuse and have 10 different results and symptoms due to their experiences growing up and the support they had."

In the video, the driver is repeatedly hit with his assailant's agal. He even picks up the agal when his attacker drops it, handing it back to him. Asked why a person might hand back a weapon of assault, Dr Cairns said: "This could be due to very low self-esteem, fear, or even that he may have felt that the abuse was somehow justified."

Anger, Dr Cairns said, was a natural human reaction.

"It is normal to feel angry, but when the scale of the anger is disproportionate with the situation then it is likely that there are underlying issues," she said.

Modern Stationery has not filed a case against the Emirati or the person who recorded the attack and posted it on YouTube.

"No, we have not filed any case," said a manager. "Anyway, the case was taken up because the news was on YouTube."