A SHEFFIELD taxi driver has been left blinded in his right eye after being attacked with a glass bottle.
Arshad Mahmood, from Nether Edge, was struck with the weapon after telling a passenger he would not let him drink alcohol in his vehicle.
The 40-year-old, a married father of three teenage children, had been called out to Fox Hill Road, Birley Carr, on Tuesday, at about 11pm, when the incident happened.
Emergency services were called by staff at the Fox Hill Tandoori takeaway and Mr Mahmood’s brother-in-law, Yasin Khalid, who had phoned him by chance after the attack.
Mr Mahmood, who has two sons aged 17 and 15, and a 12-year-old daughter, is currently being treated at the Royal Hallamshire Hospital.
Mr Khalid said: “My brother-in-law is a family man and the only breadwinner in his household. He will not be able to work again and this attack has ruined his life. We have been told he has lost the sight in his right eye.
“It is going to be very hard for the family to cope.
“Whoever did this needs to be given a long prison sentence. It is worrying for me, too, because I work as a taxi driver and it makes you wonder what might happen when picking up a fare.”
Hafeas Rehman, chairman of the Sheffield Taxi Trade Association, said he was ‘very concerned’ about the attack.
He said: “It’s a horrific incident which will have a devastating impact.”
The alleged attacker had been drinking at the Fox and Hounds pub, on Fox Hill Road, before calling the City Taxis vehicle. Landlord Mick Keeney, said: “We are doing all we can to help the police with their enquiries.”
Derek Flint, of City Taxis, said: “We are shocked and saddened by the news. The attack highlights the vulnerability of taxi drivers and shows how by the actions of a mindless thug, a driver’s whole future can be placed in jeopardy. Our sincere thoughts are with Arshad’s family.”
n A man has been arrested and police are appealing for witnesses. Call police on 101.