Indian American metro driver saves Asian man in New York

Tobin Madathil
Tobin Madathil; image via Facebook

Heroic act comes amid surge of hate crimes against Asians in The Big Apple.

A quick-thinking Indian American metro operator saved an Asian man who was pushed onto the tracks at a Queens subway station in New York in an apparent hate crime.

Subway operator Tobin Madathil told The New York Post that he was pulling into the 21st Street-Queensbridge station around 7:45 a.m. Monday when he saw something in his path.

He quickly jumped into action and managed to stop his train about 30 feet from an Asian male who had been shoved onto the tracks by a crazed suspect moments earlier.

“Right when I was coming into the station people were waving at me, and that’s when I immediately placed the train into emergency mode,” Madathil, 29, told the daily in a phone interview. “I’m glad I was able to stop on time and didn’t hit the guy, thank God!” the operator said.

READ: Hijab-wearing MTA officer assaulted in New York City, yelled at as “terrorist” (December 5, 2016)

About the same time, good Samaritans from the platform were also helping the victim up, according to Madathil.

“I exited the train and went to the victim. He was bleeding from the head,” recalled Madathil.

Madathil said he called the subway control center and requested medical attention. Soon after, EMS and police arrived, he said.

The victim was taken to Mount Sinai Medical Center with a cut on his forehead.

“I just try to stay focused at all times when I operate, just watch the tracks and platform, just be alert,” said Madathil who has been working as a a train operator for two years.

READ: Erika Menendez who pushed Sunando Sen to his death in New York City sentenced to 24 years in prison (May 22, 2015)

The crime is being investigated as a possible bias incident, according to police.

New York City has suffered an upsurge of communal violence against Asians and Jews most of them perpetrated by non-White persons.

This year till the beginning of May there were 80 hate crime attacks on Asians in the city and 54 against Jews, according to police.


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