Tower Hamlets protest winner still fears attacks

Azmal Hussain chairman of Brick Lane Restaurateurs Association at his Brick Lane restaurant London 050813 © david.altheer@gmail.com

ONE OF the four people whose long-running protest unseated Tower Hamlets mayor Lutfur Rahman is living in fear of violence.

Leading Brick Lane entrepreneur Azmal Hussain, pictured, who likes to style himself the Curry King, has been told to expect an attack on one of his restaurants and businesses.

The High Court last month April 2015 found Rahman, who led Tower Hamlets for almost five years, guilty of vote-rigging, seeking spiritual influence through local Islamic leaders and calling his Labour rival a racist.

A van owned by Hussain was painted and a window at one of his restaurants

Whitechapel overground station 250616 © david.altheer@gmail.com
Whitechapel station: in the heart of the traditional Tower Hamlets market

was broken when his name emerged in the campaign alleging electoral fraud by Rahman.

Hussain was told that his Preem and Prithi restaurant would be damaged after a Defend Democracy rally.

Loving Dalston is, of course, not suggesting any connection between the mayor’s removal from office and the threats and violence Hussain has endured since 2010.

Pressure has also come from unexpected quarters, including the Metropolitan Police.

It has occasionally acted strangely during the five years of the protest, which has involved a big financial risk to the anti-Rahman four because of fees

Whitechapel market fabrics 2014 © david.altheer@gmail.com
Colour crazy: Whitechapel market is a delight for lovers of bright fabrics
City of London abuts Whitechapel 250616 (ex Whitechapel hosp) © david.altheer@gmail.com
The rich City abuts Tower Hamlets

for the lawyers necessary to their campaign. The court has now ordered Rahman to pay costs of £250,000.

At the height of the case the Met tried to interview Hussain and the lead protester. They did not co-operate.

The leader, Andy Erlam, said that as he sat in court listening to the judge read the ruling, a CID email arrived, seeking an “under caution” interview.

It was, Erlam told The Daily TelegraphKafkaesque”.

Hussain said: “It has been a very difficult time for me and my family.

“There has been a lot of pressure on me and I am just glad it is all over.”

Hamish Scot 020515

* Backstory: Gutter tourists harm Brick Lane   

* Emboldened underscored words in most cases indicate a hyperlink, a reader service rare among websites. If a link does not work, it is probably because the site to which the URL refers has not been maintained. 

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