Way back in 1994, Abdul Karim Tunda, his two wives and six children quietly left Pilkhuwa town in Ghaziabad after news of his alleged involvement in the 1993 bomb blasts surfaced. They never returned.
Family members of Tunda — including his sister-in-law and his younger brother, who still live in Pilkhuwa — said they had no idea about Tunda’s whereabouts all these years.
“He married my sister (Zarina) at his house at Bazar locality. She was not happy. There were fights as Tunda mostly lived outside. He stayed away for months, sometimes years,” Tahira Begum, Tunda’s sister-in-law, said.
Tahira said she had to suffer a lot. “My husband was picked up and released after almost five years. We had no house and could not get one on rent. Finally, we went to the Ashok Nagar house Tunda had purchased,” she said.
After his first marriage, Tunda travelled to a number of cities. In 1990, he came in touch with Mumtaz, whom he later married and took to Pilkhuwa. He bought a house at Ashok Nagar where the family stayed till 1994.
Abdul Karim was named ‘Tunda’ by locals when he arrived at Pilkhuwa after his second marriage with Mumtaz. “We were stunned to see one of his hands chopped off from the wrist. He said it came under a crusher,” Tahira said.
Brothers parted ways
Nearly two km from Ashok Nagar, Tunda’s younger brother Abdul Malik stays with his family. Malik, nearing 72, said he never met Tunda after a scuffle between the two in 1993.
“He was a wanderer and never kept his wife and children happy. Once he wanted to take his eldest son with him but we resisted. He slapped me and we parted ways. Our father believed he was under the influence of evil spirits,” Malik said.