A Muslim charity worker has described how he was racially abused and robbed after trying to promote “understanding and peace” by giving out Christmas decorations.

Muj Hussain, 31, said he “felt he was going to die” when someone allegedly called him a “f****** Paki” and punched him in the head in Colvin Road, Thornton Heath, at about 10.30pm on Christmas Eve.

The attacker also robbed an envelope containing about £500 in donations to the charity Mr Hussain runs, Source4Life, which he had collected that day by giving out Christmas decorations in different parts of Croydon.

Mr Hussain, who lives in Morden, was on his way home after fundraising at The Horseshoe pub in London Road when the suspected attacker jumped him from behind.

He said: "I was almost back at my car, and then all I hear is, ‘You f****** Paki’. Then he whacked me so hard. It was cold as well so it felt really hard, right in the crown of my head where I have got no hair left.

"I went down, my hearing went all muffled, and my eyesight went blurry. I actually felt I was going to die.

"I was just thinking of my wife, my daughter, my mum, and just thinking, 'Is this what my life is going to be?' I'm trying to lead the best life I can and set the best example for my daughter, and this is happening to me?”

Mr Hussain said he had hoped to challenge negative perceptions about Muslims by handing out the decorations, as well as raising awareness for his charity.

He said: "I wanted to try and create some understanding and peace with the wider community and Muslims. I wanted to show people we're not all arseholes who work for Isis.

“I'm British-born, brought up and educated. I have no qualms about going in a pub in the evening, even if I'm not drinking."

Mr Hussain said he had planned to hand out the decorations for free, but many people had insisted on donating after hearing about his charity.

He set up Source4Life last year with the aim of designing and funding clean water and electricity systems in developing countries like Kenya, Bangladesh, and Tanzania.

Mr Hussain, who also works for Uber and claims to be one of the taxi app’s highest-rated drivers, said it was the first time in his life he had been a victim of racist abuse.

He said: "I'm 31-years-old, and I have never once had an issue with being brown, Asian, Muslim, Pakistani. That's why this has knocked me back a bit…I thought all this Enoch Powell s*** was over thirty years ago.”

Mr Hussain was keen to pay tribute to a passerby who called the emergency services and stayed with him as he sat in the street after the attack, bleeding from the head.

But he added: “It's depressing. Those lovely people that day who gave me donations…it’s more than me getting hurt, it bugs me about losing that money.”

At least two people had made donations to Source4Life online since the attack, Mr Hussain said: "That’s the kind of thing that gives you peace, and hope in humanity."

A Metropolitan Police spokesman on Friday said no arrests had been made and enquiries were ongoing.

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