Reasons for Street Fights in Old Hyderabad: Ego, Fun and Biryani
HYDERABAD:If the video clip of the deadly ‘friendly’ street bout in the Old City has shocked you, think again. This street fighting isn’t new and has been going on for a long time now. What is usually at stake? The ego boosting title of a ‘fighter’ and sometimes, chump change or even worse, biryani!
Nabeel Mohammed, 17, died in one such fight at Panjeshah in Mirchowk on May 3 but the incident came to light only on Sunday.
Habeeb Mustafa, a former national level boxer and state champion from Jahanuma, explains, “Fights, for fun or to just prove a point, do happen on the streets here. These boys are loafers who basically hail from middle-class families and are irresponsible. Anyone who has the guts can become this ‘fighter’. They become a pain for the family as well as the society.”
According to him, the ‘fighter’ - the one who stays undefeated - gets respected among his peers. “Never heard if they fight for money. Could be rare. But often, these fights are just to prove a point and get status,” he adds. Mustafa clarifies that these street fighters cannot in anyway be compared to ring boxers or wrestlers. “Real boxers or wrestlers have stamina and discipline in life, unlike those who roam around all night on bikes and fight for ego,” points out Mustafa, who now works for the South Central Railway.
“If these boys really want to fight, why don’t they come to the ring? Playing for the State or the country is a matter of pride,” he says.
A police officer, on condition of anonymity, admits that streets fights take place in areas where there is no patrolling. “Street fighting has been going on for a long time. Betting too happens there. Sometimes, they fight for the heck of it or for a packet of biryani. The main reason why the police is unable to crackdown on such boys is due to less police patrolling in lanes and bylanes of the Old City,” he confirms. Another official is surprised that boys are fighting for fun.
Md Abdul Akram, a social worker from Mir Chowk area, puts things in perspective. “Young boys start own gangs and socialise at snooker parlors and hookah bars. It is a matter of pride for these gangs if they win betting matches and fights,” he explains.
Nabeel’s body was exhumed and a post- mortem was conducted on Monday
Eight youths were detained for questioning. However, nobody has been arrested yet
A case of suspicious death was registered earlier and the police is awaiting the post-mortem report after which a case of murder may be booked against the youngsters involved
Nabeel’s parents allege his killer is a regular street-fighter