THE WIFE and children of a Sheffield taxi driver blinded in one eye after an unprovoked assault said the attack had ‘ruined his life.’
Arshad Mahmood, aged 40, of Nether Edge, was struck in the face with a bottle on Fox Hill Road, Birley Carr, after telling a customer he was not allowed to drink alcohol in his cab.
The married dad-of-three was taken to hospital for an operation but doctors failed to save the sight in his right eye.
Speaking exclusively to The Star, his wife Arsheed Mahmood said: “I haven’t been able to sleep since. Normal life has stopped, our world has been turned upside down.
“This is an injury which has ruined my husband’s life.”
Mr Mahmood, who was working for City Taxis, also has fractures around his eye socket and inflamation affecting his left eye.
He remains in the Royal Hallamshire Hospital on morphine.
His wife, daughter Zahra, aged 10, and sons Shaoaib, 15, and Junaid, 17, said the incident had ‘turned their lives upside down’ and left them sleepless with worry.
Mrs Mahmood, who has been at her husband’s hospital bed with the children, said: “I had only spoken to my husband on the phone half an hour before.
“Then my brother called me saying my husband was in hospital.
“I just thought it would be a little cut and that he would be fine.
“I went to the Northern General where my husband was taken first and his eye had swollen up.
“He was still bleeding and was sick three times. It made me really upset.”
Mrs Mahmood remained with her husband and he was transferred to the Royal Hallamshire Hospital.
“The doctors said they needed to get him into theatre quickly to try to save his sight but then they said they were sorry but he had lost the sight in his right eye. Everything happened so quickly.
“My husband had just gone out to do his job and did nothing to deserve this. What this person has done has destroyed our lives.”
Mrs Mahmood added: “Ramadan starts today and the festive season is coming, with Eid. We were also planning days out for the school summer holidays, but the happiness isn’t going to be there. The couple’s three children have been off school and relatives and the wider community have also rallied round.
Mrs Mahmood added: “Father Kilgallon, of the Mother of God Catholic Church, on Abbeydale Road, has visited my husband and said he will pray for him, and people from City Taxis and the Taxi Trade Association have seen him.
“The consultant at the Royal Hallamshire, Dr Tan, has been really helpful.”
She also praised the head at her daughter’s school.
Daughter Zahra wrote down her feelings after the attack.
She wrote: “The guy who has done this to my dad has taken away our happiness but nothing bad has happened to him in return. It has affected all of us and everyone who cares about my dad.”
Police are appealing for witnesses to the assault, at about 11pm on Tuesday, and have arrested a suspect. Call 101 and refer to incident 1337 of July 17.