Posted by: informer | October 7, 2008

Behind jailed engineers

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/Behind-jailed-engineers,-a-strained-marriage,-promise-of-faith/221623/

Behind jailed engineers, a strained marriage, promise of faith

New Delhi, Bangalore, September 26 “By treating my patients, how am I serving Allah?” this was the statement that started the conversation four months ago between New Delhi doctor Madhumita Mishra and Bangalore-based IBM engineer Mohammed Yaseen. Today, Yaseen, 32, and his 31-year-old friend Intel engineer Shaji Yusuf are in jail, accused by the Delhi police of being at the centre of Mishra’s abduction drama — a charge that police claim could also be linked to “fundamentalist activity.”According to the complaint filed by Mishra’s husband, opthalmologist Subijay Sinha, Yaseen abducted Mishra — his aim was to allegedly extort money — after enticing her to a Bangalore madrasa via a social networking website. Interviews with madrasa officials in Bangalore and Mishra’s statement to a Tis Hazari magistrate, accessed by The Indian Express, point to a story of a strained marriage, a connection over the Internet and the promise of faith which even led to Mishra’s conversion to Islam.

In May 2007, Mishra, who was working as a senior resident in Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Hospital, completed her MD from Maulana Azad Medical College while her husband Sinha did his MD in Opthalmology from AIIMS. While Sinha returned to Kolkata, Mishra stayed back to look for a job. They were married two years and theirs was a “love marriage.”

“I had a strained relation(ship) with my husband,” says Mishra, according to her statement. “I was staying alone at my brother’s place in Noida and my husband was in Kolkata. During that time, I started exploring Orkut, a social networking website. Here, I came across a community ‘Islam and Muslim’ which had 30,000 members. I started posting queries about Islam on the discussion forum. One Feroze Hussain answered my initial questions. Then I asked a question, ‘By treating my patients, how am I serving Allah?’

“To this question, I got a reply from Mohammed Yaseen. I was very impressed by his mail. We initially started interacting through forum, then through scrapbook and later through mails. He was 32, almost my age, and I was impressed with his maturity. He spoke about Islam and discussed the benefits of embracing this religion. He said that death would come soon and, therefore, it’s better to join it. But he said I should convert to Islam only if I am convinced. I was looking a job and I sent him my CV and he promised to get me a job.

“He gave me his mobile number through e-mail and we started talking over phone. On August 28, he sent me a flight ticket through the Internet. I resigned from my LNJP job but did not inform my family about it. I shifted to a guest house in Karol Bagh. On September 3, I flew to Bangalore on an Indigo flight. On reaching Bangalore, his friend Shaji Yusuf was also present. They told me that before I could embrace Islam I have to urgently sign an affidavit. On September 8, I was sent to Dr Mushtaq’s madrasa in Bangalore. I was told that I will have to stay in the madrasa for 40 days and would not be allowed to go out of it during that period. On September 11, Yaseen called me up and asked me to meet him outside the madrasa. There, I saw my husband standing with him,” Mishra’s statement reads.Hearing the engineers’ bail plea today, the court directed the Delhi Police to get a statement from Dr Kareema Mushtaq who runs the Jamiat-ul-Mohsinat madrasa in Bangalore from where Mishra was picked up by the police the same day that Yaseen was arrested. (Yusuf was arrested when he came to Delhi on September 14.)

The madrasa is barely 100 yards from the Sana Nursing Home in Bangalore where Dr Mohammed Haneef, the Indian doctor arrested and later discharged of terrorism charges in Australia, first worked. The head of the Shifa Health Foundation that runs the madrasa, Mushtaq Ahmed, admits that Yaseen brought Mishra to stay at the madrasa but adds that it was of Madhumita’s own volition.

He said he asked Yaseen to produce a legal affidavit showing she was a Muslim and her certificates as a pre-requisite to admitting her. “The girl said she wanted to know more about Islam. They produced the required affidavit and certificates and we had no hesitancy in admitting her. While she was here, she had access to her mobile phone and freedom within the rules,” said Ahmed.

According to records, Yaseen produced a court affidavit stating that Mishra is a Muslim and had taken the name Dr Mumina to get admitted to the madrasa. “She boarded the flight on her own and came from Delhi to Bangalore out of an interest to know the Islamic way of life. How that becomes abduction I don’t know,” said Ahmed.

“Yaseen induced her to convert into Islam by promising her a lucrative job in Middle East,” the public prosecutor told the court in Delhi today. He added that Yaseen had even contacted Mishra’s sister Rachna and asked for Rs 10 lakh as ransom.A software architect in IBM, Yaseen is held in high regard by colleagues and is an online e-mentor for software architecture students. Some of his colleagues are surprised over the ransom charge and point to his over-Rs 10 lakh annual package. “Although radical in appearance, he got along well with everybody. At his work he was very good. He wrote and presented technical papers at conferences on more than one occasion,” a colleague said.

Since his arrest, Yaseen’s wife and child have left the Bangalore apartment they had rented and returned to Kerala.

As for Yusuf’s wife, Hasnat Abu, she denies the allegations: “We are a progressive Muslim family. My husband allowed me to keep my maiden name and keep working. Moreover, I don’t even wear a burqa. How can we be extremists?”…

related news:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/Yusuf-says-he-never-spoke-to-Madhumita/223492/
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/doc-leaves-her-home-for-madrasa-intel-ibm-engineers-held/220887/

All the propaganda  news articles that were online for about a week, until the reality came out, are removed. Few of the media outlets didn’t even cared to publish the correction.

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Responses

  1. Even Bin Laden is innocent.


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