An Indian-origin mother in Hong Kong has sued the government and a police officer for alleged racial discrimination over the arrest of her teenage son over a quarrel with a Chinese woman in 2010.
Anita Singh has alleged that police officer Hung Kai-kam wrongfully arrested her then 11-year-old son Arjun Singh over a quarrel.
A court in Hong Kong heard Antia's case yesterday.
The quarrel occurred when Arjun bumped into the woman, Chan Yuet-lai, while rushing past her on an escalator in Wan Chai MTR (Mass Transit Railway) station on January 6, 2010.
Arjun, now 15-year-old and studying physics at King's College London, said Chan grabbed him by the arm and refused to let him go.
He alleged that Hung ignored his complaint against Chan and arrested him.
Arjun accused the police officer of favouring Chan's version of the incident over his own because of his race.
The Singh family sued Hung and the Hong Kong government for breach of the Racial Discrimination Ordinance.
The mother and son are demanding an apology from Hung and want the government to conduct an investigation into the incident.
Arjun is also seeking damages for unlawful arrest.
Anita told the court that "since there was a crowd, [the officers] had to act as if they were listening to us but they weren't interested," the South China Morning Post reported.
She said Hung wanted to "show his power".
Several MTR staff members guarded her son "as if he was a criminal", she said, leaving him "traumatised and terrorised".
Arjun said Hung arrested him without sufficient investigation.
Defence counsel Stewart Wong Kai-ming said Hung had spoken to Arjun, his mother and two other witnesses for some 40 minutes before making the arrest.
But Anita said Hung told her son he was going to arrest him in their first conversation, and repeatedly mentioned the word "arrest".
She did not think an 11-year-old could be arrested and only understood that her son was under arrest after her husband paid his bail at the police station that night, Anita said.
The teenager, described as a child prodigy, said he has nightmares and anxiety as a result of the incident.