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An emotional return for Sabeel

TENSE HOMECOMING: Sabeel Ahmed rushes into his house in Bangalore on Thursday.

TENSE HOMECOMING: Sabeel Ahmed rushes into his house in Bangalore on Thursday.   | Photo Credit: — Photo: Bhagya Prakash K.

Staff Reporter

Media disappointed as he dodges them; mother says he will talk to them later

BANGALORE: Months of tension dissolved into an intensely emotional moment when Zakia Ahmed finally set her eyes on her son Sabeel Ahmed, who returned to the city early on Thursday morning.

She and her daughter Sadia Kauser were certainly not the only ones to greet the bearded doctor at the airport. There was the inevitable media presence even at 3 a.m. with the crowd peaking at 4.30 when he finally emerged from another exit.

Dr. Sabeel hugged his mother and rushed towards a car, which was parked away from the arrival terminal, where mediapersons were waiting. Before the surprised media could react, he was out of range. The usual chase and shouting followed all the way to his Banashankari house.

However, some mediapersons had been waiting there also since 3 a.m. Dr. Sabeel did not acknowledge them and vanished into the house along with his family members.

After hours of waiting, one of the reporters called Dr. Zakia Ahmed over phone asking to speak to her son, only to be told: “Dr. Ahmed is not in a position to speak with mediapersons. It will take a few more days for him to speak with you.” She then asked the reporters to leave the place.

Finally, when the reporters turned up the volume, Dr. Zakia Ahmed came out around 7 a.m. to take questions. She said Dr. Sabeel was jetlagged and was resting. “I did all that a mother does… I will see that he talks to the media later. He is very tired.”

Dr. Sabeel was sentenced to 18-month imprisonment — of which he served 11 months — for withholding information related to the failed attack on the Glasgow airport last June. In the incident his brother Kafeel drove a flaming jeep through a wall. Kafeel, who sent his brother an SMS just before his mission, died later of burns.

Under surveillance

Meanwhile, a PTI report said that Dr. Sabeel was put under surveillance. It quoted a top police official as saying State and Central intelligence agencies would keep a strict vigil on him and that he would be questioned about the events that led to the attack on the airport.

Dr. Sabeel, who hails from Bangalore, was escorted by two U.K. Metropolitan police officers when he arrived here. He was working at the Halton Hospital in Runcon from where he was arrested.

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