THE FAMILY members of Farhat Khan, the personal assistant to Samajwadi Party Rajya Sabha MP Munawwar Saleem, who was arrested by the Delhi Police on Saturday on charges of espionage, on Sunday claimed he has been falsely implicated in the case.
“We do not believe that Farhat Khan is involved in any anti-national activity. His arrest seems to be politically motivated because he was the personal assistant of Munawwar Saleem,” said Farhat’s elder brother Musharaf Khan, who is a roadside vendor. He added that Farhat (45) has no association with any party.
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On Saturday, Delhi Police had arrested Farhat for allegedly passing on classified documents, including those related to defence and shipping, to Pakistan High Commission employees.
A native of Kairana in Shamli, Farhat had married Tabassum around 12 years ago and has five children — four boys and a daughter. At 14, she is the eldest. The family of Farhat and his four brothers — who work as daily wage labourers — live in the same house in their ancestral village. “We live in a joint family and always keep a watch on each other’s activities. I never saw Farhat doing anything suspicious. If Farhat was involved in any anti-national activity, why would our family still face a financial crisis? We would have been travelling in bigs cars and have hefty bank accounts,” said Mushraf, adding Farhat had never been abroad.
Shamli police said no criminal case is pending against Farhat, who had completed a law degree from Chaudhary Charan Singh University in Meerut.
Farhat’s youngest brother Naushad Khan said he was arrested from the MP’s New Delhi residence on Friday. They came to know about the arrest after the domestic help of Munawwar Saleem called them up. “He said four policemen had come and took Farhat away. Hours later, we saw on television that Farhat has been arrested. Musharaf asked me to go and check with the Delhi Police but no policeman could give any specific information. So far, no one from the Delhi Police had informed us on what charges had Farhat been arrested,” said Naushad, who works as motorcycle mechanic in New Delhi.
“Farhat had visited Shamli a week ago and stayed with the family for three days… So far, we have not been able to contact Munawwar Saleem,” he added.