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After 20 yrs in India, Pakistani man fights to return home

He ran away from his home in Pakistan at the age of nine because his father forced him to go to school. HT Correspondent

mumbai Updated: Jun 27, 2012 02:59 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times

He ran away from his home in Pakistan at the age of nine because his father forced him to go to school.

Now, 20 years later, Siraj Murad Khan has approached the Bombay high court seeking directions to the authorities to allow him to return to his native place in Manshera in Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) as he is it finding it difficult to get his children admitted to a school in the city.

A division bench of justice Ajay Khanwilkar and justice AR Joshi posted the petition filed by Khan for hearing on Wednesday on request of his advocate Ejaj Naqvi.

According to the petition filed on Tuesday, Khan wants to return to his native place primarily because no school is willing to admit his six-year-old daughter.

Also, he is finding it difficult to secure a livelihood because of his Pakistani citizenship. He further claims that he and his family are not getting any benefits under governmental schemes, although his wife is a local and she possesses valid documents.

Khan, who lives in Wadala with his wife Sajida and three children, came to India in 1992. After landing at Delhi with a Rajasthani troupe, he initially spent some time in the national capital and later at Varanasi.

He subsequently shifted to Mumbai in search of work and settled down and got married to a local.

Earlier in 1998, Khan had tried to return to his native place, but was caught at Ahmedabad railway station for travelling without a ticket on the Nizamuddin Express.

He was sent to a juvenile home. After his release, Khan survived at Mahim Durgah for some time on donations.

He married Sajida in June 2005, and when she was pregnant with their first child, he renewed his effort to return to his hometown.

In July 2009, Khan approached the special Branch of the Mumbai Police, which handles issues related to immigration. The special branch, he alleged, handed him over to the RAK Marg police station. He was then arrested and was released on bail after six days.

First Published: Jun 27, 2012 02:55 IST