Indian-origin bus driver burnt alive in Australia

Miss Alone

Prime VIP
A 29-year-old Indian-origin bus driver was charred to death on Friday when a man set him on fire after pouring some flammable liquid on him in front of horrified passengers in Brisbane town in Australia.
Manmeet Alisher, who was driving a Brisbane City Council bus, was targeted by a man who threw an "incendiary device" at him which sparked a fire.
Alisher, a well-known singer in the Punjabi community, died on the spot while several passengers on board the bus at the time managed to escape through the rear door, police said.
Six persons were rushed to a nearby hospital for smoke inhalation and minor injuries, they said.
A 48-year-old man was taken into custody over the incident.
Detectives from South Brisbane district and the state crime command's homicide group have commenced a homicide investigation, Police Commissioner Ian Stewart said.
Preliminary inquiries indicate just after 9am (local time) passengers were boarding a bus on Beaudesert Road when a man threw an item at the driver causing fire, police said.
Police said the bus, carrying six passengers, pulled into Moorvale Shopping Centre on Beaudesert Road to pick up three passengers when the incident took place.
Flags will be flown at half mast across Brisbane on Saturday as a mark of respect for the Alisher.

Stewart ruled out any possibilities of the attack being a racially motivated one, saying there was no such indication.
"There is no evidence at this time of any linkage to terrorist-type activities and certainly that has not become evident through the ongoing investigations that have occurred. We do not believe there is any evidence at this stage linking this to a racial complaint or concern by either of the people involved," Stewart said.

"While we do not know the actual motive at this stage, I want to reassure the community that we take these incidents very seriously and that is why as a precaution, officers from the state security and counter terrorism group have also been involved," he said.
Meanwhile, the Punjabi community in Brisbane expressed shock over the death of Alisher.

Miss Alone

Prime VIP
Kin of Punjabi man burnt alive in Australia were planning for his wedding


Punjab-born bus driver Manmeet Alisher, killed in a brutal attack in the Australian city of Brisbane, was set to return home to Sangrur later this year to finalise his marriage, his brother Amit Sharma said on Friday.
Family members still haven’t told Alisher’s aged parents of his death because they fear they will not be able to endure the shock, he told Hindustan Times.
“My parents can’t survive such news and due to this fear, the family has not told them about the death of Manmeet. He was coming in December as we have almost finalised a girl for his marriage in early January,” said Sharma, who was set to travel from Alisher village to Australia to claim his elder brother’s body.
The family snapped their cable TV connection to ensure that Alisher’s parents didn’t learn of his death. “Our parents only know that Manmeet was injured in a bus accident and is in hospital. The family is mentally preparing them to share the news of his demise,” an inconsolable Sharma said.
Though police in Brisbane said there was nothing to suggest the attack on Alisher, also known as Manmeet Sharma, was motivated by terrorism or racial factors, his family believes the incident was a chilling reminder of earlier racial crimes against Indians studying and living in Australia.
Some friends and relatives of Alisher described it as a racial incident.
“I am not in position to comment. The police says there was no apparent indication it was a race-related incident, but authorities are still not clearly saying why the man threw some inflammable liquid only on my brother and set him ablaze. Manmeet was killed mercilessly,” Sharma said.
The village was in shock as Alisher was well known across Sangrur district. His family is associated with the Shiromani Akali Dal, and Alisher hosted politicians such as AAP MP Bhagwant Mann and Akali leaders when they visited Brisbane.
Alisher also performed at various events and his last performance was at the expatriate Punjabi community’s Diwali celebrations on October 23.
A student of the Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya in Sangrur, he moved to Australia about nine years ago on a student visa. He started a restaurant called Desi Flavours and drove a bus for the Brisbane City Council.
Bhagwant Mann, the MP from Sangrur, shared pictures taken with Alisher on Facebook. AAP leaders Durgesh Pathak and Kumar Vishwas tweeted about his death and SAD leader Winnerjit Singh Goldy asked Union minister Harsimrat Kaur to help the family in bringing the body back to India.
Congress leader Captain Amarinder Singh expressed shock at the brutal killing and demanded that the Australian government should conduct a high-level investigation into the incident and ensure the safety of all Indian immigrants. Singh said he would also ask the government to raise the issue at the diplomatic level.
In 2011, then prime minister Manmohan Singh had taken up the issue of racial attacks with the Australian government. There were more than 100 such attacks on Punjabis during 2009-11, rights activists said.