Stranded in Pakistan for 22 years, 24-year-old Salman, who is currently living with his relatives in Karachi, is likely to return to his home in India. Salman’s kin from Aligarh on Thursday called on Raj Kumar Verka, vice-chairman of National Commission for Scheduled Castes, in Amritsar, who had “assured them of all possible help”.
In 1994, when Salman was just 2, his mother Salma Begum, who is married in India, had left him behind in Karachi with his maternal grandparents after he fell seriously ill and her 90-day Noori Visa expired.
For over past two decades, since Salma returned to her husband in India, her family has been trying to bring her son home, but only courted disappointment as Salman, they claim, lacks a nationality. Stating that her son is neither Indian nor Pakistani, Salma said her family had been running from pillar to post to bring Salman back home. Salman wants to return to his parents in India after her aunt, who has adopted him, now wants to disown him.
“In 2013, when we met minister of external affairs Salman Khursheed, he directed the Indian High Commission into resolve the issue, but the matter is still a hanging fire,” said Salma. While assuring all possible help to Salman’s family, Verka said he had spoken to the Pakistani foreign secretary in this regard and sought complete information concerning Salman’s case.
“In this regard, the National Commission for Scheduled Castes has shot off a letter to the Indian High Commission in Pakistan to provide complete information about the case. We will make all possible effort to bring Salman back,” he said. Pakistani Human Rights activist Ansar Burney has also sought help for Salman through an email sent to Akhil Bharatiya Human Rights Organisation (ABHRO). ABHRO national secretary BS Shekhawat and secretary Mukesh Kumar were also present on the occasion.