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Student thrashed after photo with classmates goes viral on Whatsapp

Mohammed Riaz in a private hospital in Mangaluru on Sunday.  

 In yet another case of suspected vigilante attack in the region, a final year computer science student of a degree college at Surathkal near Mangaluru was beaten up allegedly by a group of men after a photograph of his with five girls and two boys from his college was circulated on Whatsapp. 

The incident took place on Sunday, but, according to the police, the photograph of the boy and his friends went viral on Whatsapp on Saturday.

The victim, Mohammed Riaz, was admitted to a private hospital here after the attack. The Surathkal police have, based on a complaint by Riaz’s father, A. Abdul Rehman, registered a case of kidnap and attempt to murder. 

When contacted by The Hindu at the hospital, Mohammed Riaz said, one of his friends, who was in the photo, Ritesh, had come to his (Riaz’s) house in Kana with another friend Vinith at around 11 a.m. on Sunday to discuss the picture going viral. He said that four persons suddenly came in a car and pushed all the three of them into it and drove away to Kaikamba near Bajpe. 

On a ground in Kaikamba, five more persons joined the alleged assailants and beat him up mercilessly after making enquiries with him about his religion. They also beat up his other two classmates, he said. 

“It was like a drama,” Riaz said. “When I asked for water, they forcibly made me to drink beer,” he alleged and added that later they blindfolded him and left him near a petrol bunk at Mukka on the national highway (Mangaluru-Udupi) 66. He was later admitted to hospital. At that time he was not even aware of what happened to his two friends.  The victim claimed that the photograph was taken by Vinith on February 18 in a classroom at the college. He claimed that he did not pose for the photograph and that he was sitting in a bench next to where the others (five girls and two boys) took the group photograph.

In February 2014, a 20-year-old boy was attacked by a group when he was found with a girl on the Surathkal beach.

The Surathkal police have, based on a

complaint by the victim’s father, registered

a case of kidnap and attempt to murder