Nigerian nationals go on rampage to avenge fellow countryman’s murder in Nalasopara: Mumbai

Six residents injured in ensuing vandalism; accused allege local youths in Nalasopara killed their partner

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Image Courtesy: TOI

After the suspicious death of a friend in the wee hours of Wednesday, a group of over 25 Nigerian nationals went on a rampage and vandalized several vehicles in Nalasopara East. The police said that at least six locals were injured in the violence that ensued, the Mid Day reported.

The Nigerian national identified as Gut KeJoseph, was in his early 30s and according to his friends, was allegedly beaten up by a group of local youths of Pragati Nagar at around 3.00 AM. While Joseph’s friends rushed him to a nearby hospital, the doctors declared him brought dead. In revenge of this alleged murder, around 20 – 25 Nigerians rioted on the streets the same morning where they damaged private and public vehicles in the locality, said a cop from the Tuling police station.

The Tuling police have not yet been able to ascertain the cause of death and are waiting for the post-mortem report. They have registered an Accidental Death Report based on preliminary inquiry.

The police however state that the Joseph was out drinking with his group of friends when they got into a fight amongst themselves, where Joseph was believed to be punched and kicked. After this the killers fled, while the Nigerians went around destroying parked vehicles. This led to locals getting enraged and they went to all the residential buildings where Nigerians reside and threatened them to dire consequences if they stepped out.

A police team was deployed in the area and the situation was brought under control. “We have checked CCTV footage which shows several Nigerians taking the deceased to the hospital. Joseph’s death at the moment remains a puzzle. His post-mortem report will disclose the actual cause of death,” said a cop.

The locals have expressed immense anger against the vandalism by the Nigerians alleging that they live in the area illegally and engage in illegal activities.  While the police have filed a case of rioting punishable under Section 146 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860, no arrest has been made yet said the Palghar district police Public Relations Officer Hemant Katkar.

This is not the first instance of a murder of a Nigerian citizen. In 2017, another Nigerian national was found murdered in his flat in the Hanuman Nagar area of Nalasopara.

It has been reported by the officers of the Anti-Narcotics Cell in the past that Nigerians in India have started courting arrest for petty crimes to avoid deportation. They indulge in offences like drug peddling, which are bailable, for which the trials drag on for years allowing them to remain in the country.

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