The three children who were rescued by the Nizampura police on Thursday — after they were confined to their dilapidated shanty for six years — continue to deny that they were ill-treated by their father.
After his wife left him, 55-year-old Shafique Momin Mohammed Ismail, who works at a shop in Bhiwadi, began to limit the children to the house near quarter Masjid gate at Nizampura in Bhiwandi. Of the three children, Raiyaan,15, Aiyaan,12, and Mohiya,10, the eldest is being treated for a broken leg while his siblings are malnourished and unable to walk properly after being confined in the 450 square metre shanty for six years.
Ram Balsingh, senior inspector from Nizampura police station said, “Even though the neighbours noticed that Ismail’s children would never come out of the house, they never complained to the police. But they also said that they never heard or saw Ismail beating his kids. Also, the children refuse to blame their father for their condition.”
He added, “When we spoke to Shafique, he said that he was scared that his wife would come and kidnap the children so he would not encourage them to go out of the house. He said that he was too poor to afford food for the boys and would thus go begging for food.”
Furqan Ahmed, 36, a neighbour and businessman who is taking of Aiyaan and Mohiya said, “Ismail’s wife ran away in 2010 and after which we never saw his children outside the house. On several occasions we have given clothes and food to Ismail but he would take the food and throw it into the dustbin, fearing we have mixed something in the food.”
Deputy commissioner of police from zone – 2 Manoj Patil said, “We have not lodged any case as the children are denying to being forcefully confined in the shanty by their father. If required, we will take the children and the father for counseling or send the children to remand home.”
Patil added, “Prima facia it is not seem to be a case of harassment or torture but our investigation is underway.”