‘Death Threat’ at London 2012 Olympics Borough Council Meeting

Peter Dominiczak, London Evening Standard, May 17, 2012

A London councillor has been arrested for allegedly threatening to kill a rival in a packed town hall chamber.

The Labour politician was seized following the extraordinary confrontation last night with a woman councillor in the Olympic borough of Tower Hamlets.

Screams were heard coming from the town hall as the midnight debate descended into a “violent fracas”.

Kosru Uddin, 45, is said to have made death threats to Rania Khan, a supporter of Independent mayor Lutfur Rahman. Mr Uddin was still in custody today. One source, who was present at the meeting, said: “There was violence. It was just chaos.”

Rania Khan and Kosru Uddin

The clash is the latest political crisis to hit Tower Hamlets — dogged by allegations of voter fraud and claims that Mr Rahman is linked to groups supporting extremism.

It erupted at about 11.35pm after the chamber had been cleared of the public and press. One eyewitness said today it started when Ms Khan referred to Mr Uddin as a “chamcha” — a Bengali word which translates as spoon but is used to mean lackey or lickspittle.

Mr Uddin is then said to have had an angry confrontation in the council chamber with Ms Khan’s mother, Independent Limehouse councillor Lutfa Begum, over the use of the word. He is alleged to have threatened Ms Khan before the police were called.

Mr Rahman had been present earlier but is not thought to have been in the chamber at the time of the altercation. Independent councillor Ms Khan today said she was “on the verge of mentally and physically collapsing” following the clash. Sources today told the Evening Standard the mayhem unfolded after a disagreement about the appointment of a new chief executive.

Labour and Tory group members were arguing that the recruitment process had been “flawed” and refused to reach an agreement over the appointment of Aman Dalvi.

The borough has been dogged by political controversy in recent years. Mr Rahman was ousted from the Labour Party over alleged links to Islamic extremists before successfully fighting the mayoral election as an Independent candidate. He has denied all the allegations about his links to extremism.

It also emerged this month that the council was facing a police investigation into allegations of voter fraud during a by-election.

Ms Khan, who is the cabinet member for culture on the council, said she was “a bit shaken up” as a result of the confrontation.

She added: “I don’t want to say anything more than that at the moment because I don’t know how far it will go. I am on the verge of mentally and physically collapsing. It is just not right for me to be talking about it. I can’t deal with it at the moment.”

Councillor Peter Golds, the leader of the Conservative group on the council, said: “The meeting was extremely acrimonious and unpleasant. My group were out of the way when this incident happened.”

One source, who was present at the meeting, said: “There was a violent fracas. It was chaos. But frankly, we’ve seen worse in Tower Hamlets before. People have asked for the police to be called during meetings in the past.”

The Met said: “Tower Hamlets police arrested a 45-year-old man on suspicion of making threats to kill. It was in relation to an incident that occurred during a meeting at the town hall at about 11.35pm. The man is still in custody at an east London police station.”

A council spokesman said: “Following an alleged incident in the council chamber last night, we can confirm that the police were called. We understand they interviewed members of the council. We will be helping the police with their inquiries as required.”

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  • I W

    This…is London…

  • Dirk_Pitt

    Bring third world people to the west and get the third world in your back garden.

  • loyalwhitebriton

    Council meetings have always been, shall we say, boisterous; but never like this.
    When you import the 3rd world to your country, you get 3rd world politics; sane, normal, people understand this. Not so the loopy Leftists, who give felatio to diversity, and the finger to the rest of us!

  • anonymous_amren

    Actually, I find  myself agreeing with Kosru Uddin. More violence and death-threats against Lutfur Rahman and his supporters is exactly what we need. Good on you Kosru Uddin. I wish more of us had the courage.

  • IstvanIN

    And the BNP is dangerous????

  • Johnny Reb

    A pox on all their houses.  I pray for a Hatfield v. McCoy-type feud between clashing non-whites that fills the morgues and hospitals.  Maybe then, white Brits caught in the cross-fire will wake up.

  • 3rdworld people create 3rdworld conditions

  • KenelmDigby

    Basically Tower Hamlets borough council is run by Bengalis for Bengalis – with the full conivance of the Labour Party, which has degenerated into little more than a tribal Bengalu special interest group.
     The old time English inhabitants of Tower Hamlets (the ‘Cockneys’) have been more or less ethnically cleansed.

  • JackKrak

    Not a shocking front page story since the offender is not white and not a member of a conservative political party.

    Nothing to see here, move along

  • Remember when England was the country doing the colonizing?  How the mighty have fallen to multiculturalism.

  • Looks like Pakistan to me….