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Hong Kong courts

Man admits shoving Hong Kong cleaner onto rail track

Judge praises passers-by who helped cleaner off the track after she was pushed by man who said he has had a drinking problem since 2009

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 04 August, 2018, 7:03am
UPDATED : Saturday, 04 August, 2018, 9:27am

A Pakistani man on Friday admitted that he shoved a cleaner onto a Hong Kong rail track on the spur of the moment last October, weeks after he was discharged from psychiatric and alcoholic treatment in a Hong Kong hospital.

CCTV footage played in District Court showed the cleaner Liang Youdi was waving to a friend on the opposite platform at Yuen Long Light Rail Station at about 10.25am on October 21 when Jamshed Qazi, 56, suddenly pushed her – without warning – from a near-empty platform.

Though Liang was able to sit up immediately before two passers-by jumped onto the rail to lift her up, the court heard she has yet to fully recover from an elbow bone fracture and continues to require psychiatric treatment because of the incident.

Qazi pleaded guilty on Friday to one count of wounding with intent. The case added to 15 past convictions that included five violence-related offences such as criminal intimidation and possession of offensive weapon.

District judge David Dufton said the case was serious and noted it was only good fortune that Liang did not suffer more serious injuries. He also commended the passers-by who rescued Liang.

“They may or may not know when the next train is but they jumped onto the rail to help the woman,” the judge observed.

Qazi said he is very remorseful and personally related the sentiment in a handwritten letter to Liang.

The court heard his drinking problem began sometime around 2009, when he had to quit his 12-year position as senior law clerk at Jal N Karbhari & Co in Hong Kong because a back injury sustained while he was training as a cadet with the Pakistan Army had rendered him unable to sit.

The former court interpreter was most recently discharged from Castle Peak Hospital on September 6 following three months of treatment.

But his defence counsel Mahinda Panesar said his wife soon suspected him of drinking again and left him with his beloved 10-year-old son.

Panesar said her distressed client then slept on the streets and overdosed on his antidepressants and medication for treating his sleeping and drinking problems.

On the day of offence, Panesar said Qazi drank Chinese wine and got off the train because he lost sense of his whereabouts while he was on his way to meet a friend.

“I asked him why he [pushed the cleaner], he himself didn’t know,” Panesar continued. “His mental state was such that he had no control over his actions … Perhaps he just took out his frustration on someone.”

Sentencing is adjourned to September 21, pending assessments on Qazi’s background, psychiatric and psychological condition, plus the impact on his victim.