A group of people sitting in a queue on a pavement just outside the Special Cell office in Lodhi Colony has been a familiar sight here for the last three days.
The days changed but the expressions on their faces remained the same.
Saturday, however, was different for the family members of the 10 suspects in the alleged JeM module case. Four among them walked out, bringing relief to their families and hope to others.
In the run up to this moment of release — something they claim they were repeatedly assured of by the police for the last three days — they spent their days with the hope of taking their children back home.
But, at the end of the day, the assurance would prove to be a false one. Next morning, they would come back to the Special Cell office again expecting a different scenario but the day would finally turn out to be as disappointing.
The situation induces both cynicism and scepticism which is why they are not forthcoming when approached by journalists.
Some open up but choose not to identify themselves.
Even the responses are guarded and they explain why.
“I do not know whether a statement I make to express my concern for my son will be interpreted in a different way, given a spin and invite further trouble,” says the mother of a suspect, who was not among the four to be released on Saturday.
It takes a little more convincing to make her open up about the charges against the boy.
“How can they be certain that the people he was speaking to were terrorists? And does merely talking to Sajid (an accused) makes him a terrorist?” she asks.
The father of another man who was released on Saturday, said in the last three days, he would be confronted with the question of his two young grand-daughters every night: “Where is our father?” On Saturday, the grandfather was going back armed with an answer.
A young boy whose detention was over chose to keep his response precise. “They did not beat us. Gave us tea to drink, made us sleep in AC,” is how he summed up his last three days with the request of not probing further.
They spent their days outside the Special Cell office with the hope of taking their children back home