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Malwani: ATS begins probe into disappearance of three youths

Police say they have found no reason for the three to leave home; ATS says no evidence yet to indicate that the men have left India.

Written by Srinath Raghvendra Rao | Mumbai |
Updated: December 22, 2015 4:44:53 am

The Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) has begun an independent probe after a woman complained that her husband spoke about his “wish to commit jihad”. The man is reported missing along with two others whose families have lodged separate cases of missing persons.

The men, aged between 23 and 26 years, are all residents of the Malwani locality in Malad West and they went missing from their homes between October and the second week of December.

Identified as autorickshaw driver Mohsin Sheikh, unemployed graduate Wajid Sheikh and another unemployed man named Ayyaz Sultan, the three have disappeared without a trace, and the police are yet to trace their whereabouts.

Wajid’s wife, who lodged the complaint, has left her husband’s home since his disappearance and is not in touch with her in-laws.
An ATS team visited each of the three houses Monday and questioned other people in the locality.

Even as all three families claimed that the men did not have passports, ATS officials said they were yet to get any evidence indicating the men had left India.

Wajid lived in Malwani’s block number 8, with his house separated by only a few feet from Ayyaz’s. On Monday afternoon, his older sister Ayesha sat weeping on a bed as father Bashir looked forlorn. “He is in shock,” said Ayesha. She said her father, who had a liver problem, had been extremely depressed since Wajid left.

Wajid was last seen at 3 pm on December 15 when he left home to go to the Aadhaar card enrollment centre in Charkop. “When we went to the centre to enquire, we were told that he never came there,” said Ayesha.

She said Wajid told her that he wanted to change addresses on the cards of their parents. “After changing the addresses, he was to apply for passports for our parents,” she said.

That afternoon, Wajid left home with his cellphone, but without his wallet. “He would often leave his phone at home while going out,” she recalled.

A commerce graduate who didn’t find work, Wajid helped out his father at the family’s lemon shop in block number 7. “The only other places he ever went to apart from the shop was to Vashi, where his wife’s family lives,” said Ayesha.
Wajid got married 10 months ago and his family suspects his wife might have framed him. “

He may have been kidnapped or something else may have happened to him,” she said. Ayesha claimed that Wajid left home “penniless”.
“He would have needed money to travel abroad and we had Rs 20,000 at home that day. But he did not touch that money. And he always asked me for money whenever he needed to go anywhere. He didn’t do that either,” she said.Before registering a complaint with the police early on December 16, Wajid’s family hunted for him at railway stations and hospitals nearby. “We even checked at the intensive care unit of Shatabdi Hospital thinking he might have been injured. But we couldn’t find him anywhere,” said Ayesha.

A little distance away, in MHADA colony, 26-year-old Mohsin left home around the same time as Wajid did, on December 15, leaving behind his parents, five siblings, a wife and two children.

Mohsin’s father Ibrahim Sayyad said his son had left home for Surat to attend a wedding. “He said he was going there with an uncle and aunt and had packed two sets of clothes,” he said. Ever since Mohsin left home some time after 3 pm, his cellphone has been switched off.
With no communication for two days, the family enquired with several relatives and then registered a missing person’s complaint at the Malwani police station on December 17.

“I just hope he is safe and comes back home,” said Sayyad.

With Mohsin gone, his older bother Mubin is the only earning member of the family now. They live in a one-room house in the housing colony.

The father said Mohsin had dropped out of school after Class VIII and had been driving an autorickshaw for a living for the last seven years. “He is a normal boy who prays five times a day. He has never had any trouble at home,” he said.

Ayyaz Sultan’s brother refused to comment.

The police, meanwhile, said they were yet to trace the men. “We are treating it as a case of missing persons and our missions persons department is looking into it. So far, we have found no reason for the men to leave their homes,” said Milind Khetle, senior inspector, Malwani police station.
srinath.rao@expressindia.com

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