Fund set up for Hackney businessman who fled war only to have his business destroyed by mob

Still smiling: “Shiva” Kandiah sets about cleaning up in Clarence Rd after the attack on his livelihood

PEOPLE appalled by the attacks on London businesses have rallied to help the Hackney shopkeeper shown on TV bulletins around the world weeping after his shop was pillaged.

A website has been set up and by tonight 11 Aug 2011 it was saying it was reporting almost £4,000 of donations.

Shivaharan (“Shiva”) Kandiah spent 11 years working to build up his convenience store in Clarence Road, London E5 8HB, by Clapton’s notorious Pembury Estate.

Then youths robbed it of goods totalling £10,000 as police near by were overwhelmed by other violent criminals. Repairs to the shop could cost £50,000. The rampagers destroyed the shop’s video-recording system in a frenzy of theft but were photographed by worried locals — and later recognised by Kandiah.

He told Loving Dalston: “Some of them were my customers and some of them I have seen since. They are free but they will be caught by the police, I am sure.

“They were drinking from cans of beer from my shelves as they stole. They tossed the empties on the floor. There are some of the cans,” he said, pointing. “They were all over the place.”

Kandiah, 39, came to England with his wife and two children from Sri Lanka to flee the civil war.

The fundraising campaign was started by Mark Pytlik, a Canadian who has lived in London and now lives in New York. Hackney Homemade, a farmers’ market website, and Ian Rathbone, a Leabridge member for Hackney council, helped.

Hackney council has been offering support and advice to those affected by Monday’s events. An official told Loving Dalston: “We welcome any efforts made by our communities to help these people to rebuild their lives and businesses.”

* Appeal website: http://www.helpsiva.com/

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