The Supreme Court on Wednesday sought the Centre's response on a petition filed by a woman accusing Indian intelligence agencies of picking up her husband from their residence in Saudi Arabia. The petitioner, Nikhat Parveen, moved the apex court requesting a direction to the government to trace her husband Fasih Mahmood's whereabouts.
A bench of Justice KS Radhakrishnan and Justice JS Khehar issued notices to the home ministry and external affairs ministry, seeking their responses by June 1.
Parveen's advocate, Naushad Ahmad Khan, pleaded that the court should direct the government to reveal the location of Mahmood, an engineer, and alleged he was picked up by Indian officials with the assistance of Saudi authorities.
But, a home ministry official said in response to Parveen's petition, “(Security) agencies too do not know where he is hiding.” He insisted it was incorrect that Indian intelligence agencies had taken his custody in or from Saudi Arabia.
According to Parveen, her 29-year-old husband from Bihar's Darbhanga district was allegedly taken away on May 13 for purportedly having terror links. Mahmood has been working in the Gulf for five years. The 22-year-old woman got married to Mahmood in September 2011 and had joined him in Saudi in March this year.
Parveen claimed she had written to several authorities including home, external affairs ministry, Bihar and Karnataka governments, and Saudi embassy in India but hadn't received any response.
Recalling the chain of events, Parveen said a group of Saudi and Indian officials in civilian clothes allegedly searched their house in Jubail in Dammam, confiscated a laptop and mobile phone and informed her that Mahmood had to be deported as he was wanted in India.
A shocked Parveen first contacted the Indian embassy. When there was no response, she returned to India on May 15 and then moved the SC.