Bus driver and conductor suspended after fight with disabled youth

Bus driver and conductor suspended after fight with disabled youth

THAILAND - The Bangkok Mass Transit Authority (BMTA) has suspended a private bus and its driver and conductor, pending a probe into an allegation that the conductor pushed a young passenger who didn't pay a fare off the bus.

A video clip of the alleged victim after the incident has "gone viral" on social media and brought about criticism.

Bus conductor Tananya Sae-eung, 50, driver Bamrung Padphrom, 46, and owner Saithong Kaewkhonthai, 42, were called in to the BMTA head office yesterday to explain what happened.

Thananya claimed she had never collected a fare on the number 203 bus from this "frequent passenger", who is 19 years old and with special needs.

On Sunday, he was upset when she jokingly urged him to pay the fare - he allegedly smashed his bag on the floor and tried to attack her.

Tananya said she pulled out her fare cylinder for self-defence so he stopped. She claimed she didn't know what happened to the youth after he got off at the next stop and the person who took the video wasn't on the bus.

A street vendor who witnessed the incident told The Nation that a scuffle occurred on the bus before the man fell down and sat crying on footpath with blood on his face.

The alleged victim told The Nation the conductor was angry when he didn't pay the fare as usual and threw his wallet, so he smashed his bag down and punched her.

She hit him with the fare cylinder in the face, and also pushed him when he was about to get off the bus, he said.

"I was hurt and sad so I cried and people came to help me and someone took the video clip," he added.

His guardian said he wanted the bus conductor to apologise for what she did to the disabled boy and improve her service.

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