Dubai: An Indian chef reportedly based in Dubai is under fire for allegedly abusing a woman and threatening to rape her.
Hundreds of people are calling for the immediate arrest of the man identified as Trilok Singh after he allegedly made the highly obscene remarks on social media against Swati Khanna, also from India.
In his profanity-laced Facebook post, Singh called Swati a prostitute and said she will be raped in Delhi, the centre-stage of a violent riot that left over 40 dead and more than a hundred injured last week.
Singh allegedly wrote the post in his native language Hindi. Gulf News is refraining from giving an actual translation as it is too explicit and contains references to genitals, acid and sticks.
“You eat in India and sing for Pakistan,” Singh is alleged to have said in an apparent reference to Indian Muslims and Swati’s critical stance against Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his controversial Citizenship Amendment Act which has sparked unprecedented mass protests.
Swati Khanna replied, “He lives in Dubai. In a Muslim country. And says this to me. I am an Indian who lives in India. Report this terrorist,” she added on Facebook, while attaching his Facebook profile to the post.
Lalit Hotel responds
Singh’s Facebook account has now been deleted but screenshots of his profile show he worked as a chef for the Lalit Hotel in Delhi before relocating to the UAE.
Lalit Group responded on twitter after scores of people tagged them seeking action.
“Namaskar ! We recently noticed a series of tweets about Trilok Singh. We strongly condemn this behaviour and clarify that Trilok Singh is not a part of @thelalitgroup since last two years. We are also reporting his profile to Facebook for removing his current working status,” the hotel said.
It’s not immediately clear where Singh is currently employed in the UAE though his Facebook profile says he works for a university in Dubai. A comment from the university was not readily available and Gulf News could not reach Singh for comment after trying through his employers.
Meanwhile, Dubai Police responded to a complainant on twitter by advising him to report the matter through their e-crime portal.
Tough laws on misuse of social media
People who post abusive messages on social media can be tried under the UAE Cybercrime law which stipulates stiff penalties such as jail terms and/or fines between Dh50,000 and Dh3 million.
Yet many continue to flirt with the law. In Abu Dhabi alone, public prosecutors handled handled 512 cases of social media violations in 2019 compared to 357 in 2018.
Last March, an Indian staff at Dubai-based Transguard Group was sacked and deported for posting a comment on Facebook celebrating the terror attacks in New Zealand that left 50 dead.
In June 2018, a rigging supervisor at an Abu Dhabi firm was fired after he uploaded a Facebook video in which threatened to kill Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan and rape his family. The same month a five-star hotel in Dubai terminated its contract with Michelin-starred chef Atul Kochhar after he tweeted that followers of Islam had “terrorised” Hindus for 2,000 years.
In 2017, another Keralite was terminated from his job for sending offensive Facebook messages to Indian journalist Rana Ayyub.
More recently, Indian expat Jayant Gokhale drew flak after he chided Keralite job seeker Abdulla SS for looking for work and suggested that he should make a living (sic) by joining protestors in Shaheen Bagh in New Delhi. Shaheen Bagh is the epicentre of ongoing mass demonstrations against Citizenship Amendment Act. Goklahe issued a written apology to Abdulla after Gulf News report reported the incident last month.