Hiren Mohini's murder prompts construction of protective shield for Kiwi cabbies

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Auckland, May 22(ANI): After the outrage over the killing of Indian-origin taxi driver Hiren Mohini in an Auckland suburb in January, a Perspex manufacturer has constructed a protective shield for taxi drivers, which may possibly put an end to the string of attacks on them.

Mohini was killed in a frenzied knife attack on January 31, and police believe that his killer was his last passenger, who attacked him to avoid paying a 15.20-dollar fare.

Karl Cochrane has constructed the transparent shield, which can be fitted around a taxi driver's seat and would make them less vulnerable to assaults from the passenger seat or rear seats.

"A shield would not prevent all attacks, but it would buy a taxi driver a bit of time if a passenger was behaving in a threatening manner," The New Zealand Herald quoted Cochrane, as saying.

"In three or four attacks I know of, the driver hasn't been able to get out of the car," he added.

Cochrane further expects his company, Sava Shields, to get approval from Vehicle Testing New Zealand this week to install the plastic barriers.

The estimated cost for each shield would be 1300 dollars and it could be removed in five minutes and stored in a car boot.

According to reports, New Zealand Transport Agency officials have examined the design and have recommended refinements to make it a safe addition to taxis.

Meanwhile, Tauranga Mount Taxis' Indian-origin driver Tony Singh was one of the first to buy one the shield, paying out of his own pocket.

Singh said that he decided to bear the charges to protect himself, as two of his close friends, Mohinder Singh and Dev Sangha, were assaulted in their taxis in March. (ANI)

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