Mr Zhou Aiguo, 38, (“Zhou”) was working for the construction company, Bestrom, when he was brutally assaulted by his superior, Mr Zhao Qiao Lin (“Zhao”). On that fateful day, Zhao had indicated to Zhou that he would deduct Zhou’s pay for starting his lunch break early at 11.30am. In his defense, Zhou had asked for the matter to be referred to the site manager and explained to Zhao that he had completed his assignments before taking his break. Refusing to refer the matter, Zhao went into a fit of rage and hurled insulting words on Zhou. Zhao then proceeded to throw an object at Zhou whose safety helmet fell as he ducked from the object.

Upon lowering his head to pick up his helmet, Zhao smashed an iron formwork against the back of Zhou’s head and punched Zhou in his right eyeball. A fellow worker had to come and stop the fight.

In his claim against his employer, Zhou said that his foreman, Zhao, was a violent and abusive person. Three fellow carpenters also submitted affidavits in support of his statement, saying that they too had been mistreated by the foreman.

Mr Zhou launched a civil suit for damages and won, under which the Judge had ordered his company to pay $97,000.00 to him in damages, plus interest and costs. The Judge, hearing his case, had held that the foreman’s assault was an “unauthorized mode of doing an authorized act” in the course of employment.

Zhou was represented by our senior lawyer, Mr N. Srinivasan.

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