Riyaz Sheikh was last seen at Rudraksh, a readymade garment shop at the Thakkar Shopping mall at Borivli (West), when he left from work on Friday night.
“We left together after work on Friday but when I tried calling him on Saturday, his mobile was switched off. He was very honest and hard working and had been with us since four years,” the shop owner said.
Sheikh was arrested on Saturday by the ATS for their alleged links with a Pakistan-based terrorist outfit.
Riyaz’s family denies police claims. “Riyaz has been framed. He is not a terrorist. We never had any association with Pakistan,” said Abu Bakr Sheikh (60), Riyaz’s father.
Riyaz is the third of the Sheikh’s four children. His eldest sister Nusrat is married to Abdul Latif, who has also been arrested on similar charges. The family lives in a rented place at Koyla Bhuvan chawl at Ratan Nagar in Dahisar (East). They hail from Bhusawal and have been staying in Mumbai since 50 years.
Riyaz left the house on Friday morning for work. “Thinking he might have gone to meet his friends, I did not bother much when he did not return at night,” said Aziza, his mother.
The family heard about his arrest on Saturday night. “I got a call from police and was my son was arrested. But they never told us why,” Abu Bakr told Hindustan Times.
On Sunday morning, Riyaz’s parents went to the Kalachowkie police station. “We waited for several hours when a relative told us that he saw Riyaz and Latif being produced in court on TV,” Riyaz’s father said.
Aziza said her that even though Riyaz did not study beyond class nine he could speak English very well. She added that six months ago Riyaz was arrested for being involved with a Gujarati girl, after her parents complained.