Oddball Pakistani commentator Zaid Hamid arrested in Saudi Arabia

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Jun 26, 2015 13:15 IST

Pakistani commentator Zaid Zaman Hamid, best known for his anti-India tirades and for propounding outlandish conspiracy theories, has been arrested in Saudi Arabia, the foreign office spokesperson said on Thursday.

Pakistani media had been abuzz with speculation for the past two weeks that Hamid had been arrested while on a private visit to Saudi Arabia with his wife. Reports had said he was taken into custody for making speeches against the Saudi government.

“Our embassy in Riyadh has informed us that Mr Zaid Hamid was arrested about two weeks ago. Since then, the embassy has been working with the local authorities to get consular access,” foreign office spokesperson Qazi Khalilullah told a news briefing in Islamabad.

“Due to the efforts of the embassy, his wife was able to talk to him (on June 23). Again, due to the efforts of the embassy, his wife will be able to meet with him on 30 June,” he said without giving further details.

Hamid, often seen wearing a trademark red cap, is featured brandishing weapons on his Facebook page and his blog and talking about “Ghazwa-e-Hind” or a plan to attack and capture India.


Photo taken from 'Zaid Hamid's Pictorial Blog'.

Most Indians on social media treat him as a figure of ridicule and there are several Twitter accounts that spoof Hamid.

Hamid is no stranger to controversy, with his comments on social media platforms and TV talk shows often inviting the ire of Pakistani liberals, whom he dismisses as "agents" of India. http://www.hindustantimes.com/Images/popup/2015/6/Zaid2.jpg

Photo taken from 'Zaid Hamid's Pictorial Blog'.

In 2013, a former aide who left Hamid’s organisation accused him of being on the payrolls of the Inter-Services Intelligence agency to wage psychological operations against those opposed to the Pakistani security establishment.

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