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Jailed NRI to be freed this week

Keralite A Naushad was charged with partially blinding a Saudi national.

india Updated: Feb 14, 2006 15:20 IST

An Indian man from Kerala jailed in Saudi Arabia on charges of partially blinding a Saudi national is set to be released from prison this week.

A. Naushad's impending release follows his being pardoned by the Saudi national during Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al-Saud's visit to India last month. The case had received widespread international media attention.

Speaking to IANS, Naushad's wife Sugaila said that her husband had called up on Sunday and said he expected to be released this week.

"Last week, the Indian embassy officials from Saudi Arabia called us and said they have submitted all the papers to the jail authorities," said a happy Sugaila.

Naushad, 34, had been languishing in a Saudi jail since 2003 after a scuffle with a Saudi national during which the latter's one eye was damaged. He later lost use of the eye.

According to Saudi law, one of Naushad's eyes would have been gouged out for "justice". But he was saved after the Saudi national pardoned him.

"Naushad said that he would work for a month after his release and then come on a six-month leave. He is yet to see his daughter who is now going to be three years old.

"Both our children are excited to hear that their father is coming home soon," said Sugaila.

First Published: Feb 14, 2006 14:28 IST