Attacked by a racist heckler

And police 'did nothing' to help

Asian comic Paul Chowdhry called police after he was attacked by a racist heckler – and claims they did nothing to help.

The 29-year-old comic had traded insults with the rowdy punter while compering the Bound And Gagged club in Palmers Green, North London, on Friday night.

But when he came offstage, the comedy-goer stormed into the backstage area, said "You shouldn’t have done that, mate" and punched him in the mouth.

Chowdhry, who appears in the new John Malkovich movie Colour Me Kubrik, says he was appalled by continual racist jibes from “a fat, bearded, white 40-something member of the audience” throughout the show.

"He kept shouting really lame outdated jibes like, ‘Why don’t you go back where you came from?'" said Chowdhry.

 “I retaliated against his tirade throughout the night but he did not like it when I gave as good as I got.

"He could dish it out, trying to disrupt all the comedians on the bill, but could not take a taste of his own medicine.”

Chowdhry called police, but says they told him: “If someone calls you names you should ignore and not answer back We’re not taking anyone’s side, just go home,  we don’t want any trouble.”

The comic is now considering taking civil action against the heckler and the officers involved.

Chowdhry’s publicist Richard Brecker said: “In the old days’ comics playing their trade in northern working men’s clubs used to get booed off stage or maybe someone would throw an egg or tomato. Today it seems comedians need bodyguards. But physical violence and racism in any form is unacceptable.”

A Scotland Yard spokesman said: "Police were called.  On arrival, officers spoke to a man who alleged he had been assaulted. He declined medical attention. No arrests were made and enquiries are continuing."

Published: 8 May 2004

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