A taxi driver was stabbed by a 15-strong machete gang – and only survived because of his thick winter clothes.
The thugs also rained down blows on Rafaqat Ali after he confronted them when they attacked his car. The brave dad of three escaped with his life – but now his terrified children have begged him not to return to work.
The softly-spoken 38-year-old told the Birmingham Mail: “They meant to kill me. They didn’t ask for my money. They wanted to hurt me. They were all lunging at me, taking it in turns.
“I had two T shirts on, a big jumper and a thick coat and that saved my life – my car is full of blood.”
Mr Ali, from Small Heath, was attacked as he waited in his Volkswagen for a fare in Bristol Road South, Northfield, early on a recent Saturday morning.
He was rushed to hospital, where medics told him he was lucky to be alive. He was left covered with bruises and with stitches in his thigh.
Mr Ali, who works for 24/7 Taxis, said: “I was waiting for a fare and I saw a group of lads aged around 15 to 17. One jumped on my windscreen and the others started kicking the door. I got out and said: ‘Come on lads, I’m just trying to make a living.’
“I could have driven off with them on my car but I would have been in trouble if they had been hurt. I could see lots of small knives but I’m a big bloke and I was standing my ground and I was throwing a few punches. I said: ‘I have a family’.
“When I saw the machetes come out, I thought: ‘That’s it, get in your car’. I was still getting kicked as I got in and drove off. Luckily some people had seen what happened and helped me. They called the police and an ambulance.
“The adrenalin was rushing and I didn’t feel anything but when the nurses were stitching me, it hurt.
“I don’t know how they can sleep. I’m speaking out so it doesn’t happen to someone else. Next time it could be fatal. I wouldn’t wish this on my worst enemy.”
Mr Ali’s devastated sister Raz Akhtar wept as she said: “There’s not a part of his body that’s not covered in bruises or wounds. My brother wouldn’t hurt a fly. They had no humanity, no remorse. As a family, we don’t want him to go back to work but he has a mortgage and bills to pay.”