US govt must bear treatment cost: Wife of injured Indian man

Shakuntala Patel, wife of Sureshbhai Patel who was left partially paralysed after a police officer confronted him aggressively in the US last week, on Thursday demanded the American government bear the expenses of treatment of her 57-year-old husband.

Ahmedabad: Shakuntala Patel, wife of Sureshbhai Patel who was left partially paralysed after a police officer confronted him aggressively in the US last week, on Thursday demanded the American government bear the expenses of treatment of her 57-year-old husband.

"It was a brutal attack on my husband by the US police officer, the American government should pay for the hospital expenses....My son does not earn much, they should help them and Indian government should press this issue with the US," said Shakuntala, speaking to PTI.

Shakuntala's husband landed in the US on January 30 to stay with his son in the suburb of Huntsville, Alabama.

Last week, while walking down a sidewalk in the neighbourhood, Sureshbhai Patel was stopped by the police. Since he did not know English, he was unable to respond to the questions asked by police except for saying "no English".

The policeman allegedly forced him on the ground, causing a fatal 'fused vertebrae' injury in the process. district of Gujarat.

Shakuntala, who lives in Pij village near Nadiad in Kheda, said her husband was simply stretching himself on the sidewalk outside their's son's house as he was tired after a long flight, when a neighbour found him suspicious and called the police.

"A policeman came and screamed "stop"...But he (Sureshbhai) could only say "no English" and in between he put his hand in pocket. The policeman did not listen to him and held him by his collar (before forcing him down)," Shakuntala said.

She also said that no representatives of the Gujarat or Indian government had visited her yet to offer any help or seek information, etc.

Earlier today, a senior official in the US embassy in Delhi was called by the External Affairs Ministry to convey India's concern over the incident.

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