Shabeena Begum's heart pines for her abducted son
HYDERABAD: She reels out her son's details breathlessly, her restless eyes conveying more than her staccato sentences. And then she breaks down.
Whenever someone asks about her two-year-old son Atif's kidnap, Shabeena Begum goes through the ritual. More than a week after the incident, she is a nervous wreck. Attempts of neighbours, relatives and family members to console her only make her even more desolate.
Atif was the third boy to be kidnapped from the State capital in a span of three weeks after one from Jubilee Hills and another from Madhapur, all said to be the handiwork of a single woman.
"What will the kidnappers do with my son? We are poor people and cannot give them anything. Why can't the people and policemen quizzing me for so many details find my boy?" she asks feverishly. Something that is gnawing Begum's traumatic mind is the fact that she was just a few feet away when the unidentified woman took away her tiny tot.
Hailing from Gadwal of Medak district, she came to her elder brother's house in L.N. Nagar, Banjara Hills with her two sons.
The fateful day
On February 27, she was in the living room while the boys and a neighbourhood girl, Neha were playing in an auto parked next to the front door.
The suspect came from behind and rang up someone through her mobile phone saying, "I got the prey, I got the prey".
Begum's blood boils whenever young Neha narrates this. "Had the girl alerted me I would have caught that woman and wouldn't have hesitated to kill her," the anguished mother fumes.
With every passing day scepticism seems to be seeping into the household. The boy's father Mohd. Yousuf, a tailor, puts up a brave front to assuage his anxiety-ridden wife.
The alleged delayed response of the police to the kidnap complaint also haunts Begum who charges the Banjara Hills police with failing to swiftly react when she went to lodge a complaint.
"He could have been rescued if only the police had acted fast," she says and breaks down again.