After years of waiting for help to build a house of their own, 75 year old Zainab Begum and her family finally saw hope when a truck load of bricks, sand and gravel unloaded in their yard and a job was promised to her grandson. But with Salman Khan’s five year prison term awarded by Session’s Court the family’s hopes of a house have crashed yet again.
“When we came to know that Salman Khan has been given 5 year sentence by court, all members of our family got dejected. It was Salman Khan who provided succor to our family,” said 18 year old Gowhar Ahmad who lives along with his mother, grandmother, and three sisters in a remote hamlet of Ashqmuqam in South Kashmir. “Only last week, on the instructions of Salman Khan, bricks, gravel, sand and cement dropped at our place. Khan was planning to build a house for my family,’’ he said, adding that the house in which they are presently living could crumble any time.
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Ahmad’s grandmother Zainab met Salman Khan ten days ago at Pine Peak hotel in Pahalgam where he was busy in shooting film Bajrangi Bhaijan.
“My grandmother along with my two sisters traveled to Pahalgam when she came to know that Salman Khan is in the town. They waited for Khan for hours outside the hotel and finally when he came out my grandmother stopped him and narrated the ordeal of our family,’’ said Ahmad, who is the only male member in the family after his father who was labour met an accident nine years ago. “Salman Khan promised every help to our family and also promised my grandmother that I will get a job on the sets,” he said.
Ahmad said that two days after meeting the actor, the family received a phone call from his office. “An assistant of Salman Khan asked me to come to Loripora village where he (Khan) was shooting. I went there and met Salman Khan, he asked the crew managers to give me a job on the film sets. He also assured me that he will arrange work for me in Mumbai as well.’’
Ahmad said that for three days he worked with the film crew. “Though, they offered me money, but I insisted that I want take my first earning from Salman Khan. And everybody at the crew was waiting for his return next week,’’ he said, adding that his hopes of good future looked gloomy.
Ahmad’s two sisters – Khalida, 11, and Ruqiya 13 who also met the film actor are crestfallen. “Along with our grand mother when we met Salman Khan last month, we couldn’t believe that he could be so nice with. He promised us that he will adopt us and after meeting we saw efforts being made to help us,’’ said Ruqiya who is praying for the film actor. “Salman Khan is a nice human being and provided every help to us and for us he was a hope of new life.’’
The shooting of the movie, Bajrangi Bhaijan directed by Kabir Khan was held at several places in the Valley, especially at famous tourist’s destinations of Pahalgam.