Guwahati: Three Muslim men, including a member of the Army Medical Corps, were allegedly harassed and threatened with jail time by the management of Taj Vivanta hotel here after videos of Lok Sabha MP Asaduddin Owaisi’s speeches were found on their phone.
According to reports, Imran Hussain Laskar, Sahab Uddin and Zahid Islam Barbhuiyan had checked into the four-star hotel after missing a flight to Delhi. While Laskar is a dental hygienist in the army, Uddin owns a college near Silchar and Barbhuiyan is a teacher.
According to Barbhuiyan, the trio checked in at 2pm, paid Rs 2,000 for an extra bed in their room and went out. He added that they returned at 4pm to find the hotel “full of security men” who were reportedly watching their movements. The trio said the hotel staff had also not complied with their request for an extra bed.
When questioned, the receptionist allegedly misbehaved with them, while the hotel’s chief executive officer threatened to send them to prison when they tried speaking to mediapersons who were there for a VIP event at the hotel.
Speaking to News18, Laskar said, “They put us through security check, luggage check and there were some people constantly following us everywhere. When we questioned, they said it’s the CEO’s order. Is this right; what they have done to me? Is this how they treat a soldier?”
“They confined us in a room and cornered us with a volley of questions. There were a number of security personnel who surrounded us and we were mentally tortured,” said Barbhuiyan.
“Laskar tried to record the harassment, but his mobile was snatched. They checked his mobile and found an old video of Asaduddin Owaisi and surmised he was a radical. They confiscated Laskar’s identity card, detained him and sent us to our room,” The Hindu quoted Barbhuiyan as saying.
They were reportedly allowed to leave around midnight.
Objecting to the alleged treatment meted out to the three men, lawmaker and AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi urged Assam CM Sarbananda Sonowal to initiate an inquiry.
“Taj Group hotel in Guwahati accused of profiling… Laskar tried to record the harassment, but his mobile was snatched. They checked his mobile and found an old video of Asaduddin Owaisi and surmised he was a radical @TajHotels,” Owaisi tweeted.
Taj Group hotel in Guwahati accused of profiling https://t.co/h5IPE1J20D Laskar tried to record the harassment, but his mobile was snatched. They checked his mobile and found an old video of Asaduddin Owaisi and surmised he was a radical @TajHotels — Asaduddin Owaisi (@asadowaisi) October 15, 2018
The hotel issued a statement that read:"At IHCL/TAJ security and safety of our guests is our utmost priority. Our personnel are trained according to best global standards to conduct these routines with utmost sensitivity and care and without discrimination. During all security checks, the cooperation of our guests is highly appreciated and their inconvenience is regretted."