SHAFAQNA -Â A much-loved and respected Muslim grandfather passed away on Friday, August 21, eleven days after being savagely attacked in the street on his way to perform his morning prayer at the local mosque.
“He always wears the traditional robe and headgear and it’s possible, with some things that have been blamed on Muslims, that this is the reason he has been attacked,” Mohammed Rashid, a friend of Mushin Ahmed, told Daily Mail.
Ahmed, 81, was set upon in a ‘sickening’ assault just yards from his home in Rotherham, South Yorkshire.
Described by his family as “gentle and non-confrontational,” the grandfather was on his way to say his morning prayers on August 10.
He was found slumped on the ground with serious head injuries shortly before 6am.
Nevertheless, police refused to speculate on why the elderly Muslim grandfather was targeted, but have not ruled out the possibility he was the victim of a racially-motivated attack.
The grandfather was on his way to say his morning prayers on August 10. He was found slumped on the ground with serious head injuries shortly before 6am.
His friend Rashid said it was ‘possible’ Ahmed had been targeted for his race.
Racial tensions have been simmering in Rotherham after claims that police failed to investigate the abuse of young white girls, which was blamed on Asian men.
Far-right groups have held marches in the town to try to exploit the tensions between white and ethnic minority communities in recent months.
Ahmed, who moved to Rotherham in the 1950s, was married to Margaret, 71. The couple has four children and 12 grandchildren.
Before his father’s death, his son Yoseff Ahmed, 40, condemned his attackers as “disgusting”.
“This should be seen for what it is, a terrible crime which we hope will not take away his life or his quality of life,” he said.
“We hoped that after all these years [my father] would be safe taking his morning walk to prayers, but unfortunately these days society can’t guarantee that to any of us.
“Should this turn out to be racially motivated we wouldn’t dream of labelling everyone, we need to remember they are criminals of the lowest order.’
“My father is the beloved grandfather to my seven children. His nature is gentle and non-confrontational, so it’s shocking and sickening that they couldn’t get whatever they were after by merely asking.”
Detective Chief Inspector Chris Singleton said Ahmed was a ‘much loved and respected member of his community’.