'How Can She Leave So Early': Hamid Ansari, Freed From Pak Jail Due to Sushma's Efforts, Still in Disbelief
Tears welled up Ansari and mother’s eyes as they spoke highly of Swaraj, who was largely instrumental for his release. Fauzia, broke down while recalling her 'madam' who, she thought, was extremely humble and a people’s person.
Hamid Ansari with Sushma Swaraj
New Delhi: We thought it was a rumour, said Hamid Nehal Ansari after he heard the shocking news of the demise of former External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Tuesday. Ansari is a software engineer who was repatriated to India following New Delhi’s relentless quest for his release from a Pakistan jail.
“When the news of her demise broke last night, we thought it might be a rumour because how can such a person leave us so early,” Ansari told CNN-News18 on Wednesday morning. Tears welled up in Ansari and his mother’s eyes as they spoke highly of Swaraj, who was largely instrumental for his release.
It was only last year when I met her, said an emotional Ansari. “She was very healthy and happy to meet me. She treated me like her son but it’s not even a year. The loss is irreplaceable in any way and it is very heartbreaking. I don’t have words to describe the pain that I’m going through right now,” he added.
Ansari’s mother, Fauzia, broke down while recalling her “madam” who, she thought, was extremely humble and a people’s person.
“She was not just a politician but she ruled people's heart,” the mother said.
Ansari was detained by Pakistan’s intelligence agencies and subsequently sentenced to three years' imprisonment for possessing a fake Pakistani identity card. His three-year jail term ended on December 15, 2018 but he was not able to leave for India as his legal documents were not ready.
After his son’s return, an overwhelmed Fauzia couldn’t hold her tears and couldn't thank Swaraj, who was the then Foreign Minister, enough and exclaimed "meri madam mahaan!" (my madam is great). "Mera Bharat mahaan, meri madam mahaan, sab madam ne hi kiya hai (My Bharat is great, my madam is great. Madam has done everything)," she said.
In a video shared by Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson, Raveesh Kumar, Ansari was seen visible emotional after he was freed from a Pakistani jail and returned to India six years later. During an endearing conversation with Swaraj, Ansari spoke about the difficult phase of his life in Pakistan.
Ansari went missing after he was taken into custody by Pakistani intelligence agencies and local police in Kohat in 2012 and finally in reply to a habeas corpus petition filed by his mother, Fauzia Ansari, the high court was informed that he was in custody of the Pakistan Army and was being tried by a military court.
The fact that Hamid Ansari was in detention only came to light when a young Pakistani journalist reported about him and started following his case that turned out to be a real-life 'Veer-Zaara' gone horribly wrong.
It was only then in 2015 that Pakistan admitted to having Ansari in their custody. He was summarily put through proceeds in a military court as he was accused of espionage despite his family, back in India, crying helplessly that their son had probably crossed over from Afghanistan to meet a woman he befriended online and then fell in love with.
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