Man jailed for punching fellow passenger who bumped into him on MRT train

SINGAPORE - A 34-year-old man flew into a rage and punched a fellow passenger after the latter bumped into him on an MRT train.

Hamzah Idil was jailed for a week on Friday (Feb 2) after pleading guilty to assaulting Mr Ng Shi Xiang, 30, on Dec 9, 2016.

District Judge Tan Jen Tse also ordered Hamzah to give his victim $500 in compensation for his medical bills. This amount has to be handed to the investigation officer.

Mr Ng had boarded a train at Novena station at around 10pm that day. Hamzah was in the same cabin, standing near one of the doors.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Kenny Yang said: "As the victim entered the cabin, he tried to make his way to the empty space behind the defendant.

"In doing so, the victim bumped into the defendant's shoulder and stepped on the defendant's left foot. The defendant got angry and a verbal argument ensued between them."

The dispute became more serious as the train was travelling towards Toa Payoh station when Hamzah punched his victim's face twice.

A fellow passenger pressed an emergency button and MRT staff were deployed to the station to attend to the incident.

Mr Ng went to Tan Tock Seng Hospital and a medical report dated Jan 25 last year stated that he suffered bruises on his forehead and right cheek.

On Friday, DPP Yang called for Hamzah to be given two weeks' jail, stressing that he had "behaved in a thuggish manner" on the train.

The prosecution also told the court that the incident had caused public disquiet.

Hamzah's lawyer, Mr Mohammed Shakirin Abdul Rashid, pleaded for a fine instead.

He told Judge Tan that the altercation was short and that Mr Ng had also provoked his client.

For assault, Hamzah could have been jailed for up to two years and fined up to $5,000.