Norfolk MP vows to raise case of wanted man tracked down to Norfolk

Fathima Sumaya Khan and Ahmed Hussain

Fathima Sumaya Khan and Ahmed Hussain - Credit: Archant

A Norfolk MP has spoken of his 'real concern' that a man wanted for four years in India on serious criminal charges has been tracked down to Norfolk.

North Norfolk MP Norman Lamb has also pledged to write to both the Home Secretary and Indian High Commissioner about the case of Ahmed Anees Hussain, who is living in Norwich despite being classed as having 'absconded' from his homeland where he is facing charges relating to alleged domestic violence and demanding dowry.

Last week we told how Mr Hussain has been living in a flat in Norwich city centre, rather than returning to India and answering the charges, with the authorities seemingly powerless to act.

His ex-wife, television news presenter Fathima Sumaya Khan, who lived in North Norfolk with Mr Hussain, has pleaded with the British and Indian authorities to extradite him so the trial can take place.

When approached by a reporter, the 37-year-old protested his innocence and pledged to face up to the accusations within the next 12 months.

Ms Khan, who now lives in India, has since written to her former MPs Norman Lamb, in North Norfolk, and Mike Gapes MP for Ilford South, to ask for their help in the case.

The letter states: 'I feel more needs to be done so that my ex-husband returns to India and faces the Indian court, he is an Indian passport holder after all.

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'I humbly request you take up my case with the honourable prime minister and ask for my ex-husband to be extradited to India.'

Mr Lamb said today: 'I will write to the Home Secretary asking her what steps she is taking in liaison with the Indian authorities in order to secure the extradition of Mr Hussain to India.

'I will also write to the Indian High Commissioner to establish what action has been taken to pursue the extradition given the very serious allegations against him.

'It is of real concern that someone charged with serious offences in India appears free to continue his life in this country without any challenge.

Mr Gapes has also written back to confirm he has written to the director general of UK Visas and Immigration to highlight the case.

As reported, Ms Khan has fought for her ex-husband to be deported since 2011, when Bengaluru Police issued charges under the Dowry Prohibition Act and Indian Penal Code, against Mr Hussain, as well as his sister and mother. They have both appeared before the courts.

The sections of the law they are charged under includes accusations of 'subjecting her to cruelty', 'criminal intimidation' and 'giving', 'taking' or 'demanding' dowry.

Yesterday, Bengaluru City Police commissioner MN Reddi again pledged his intention to take action, saying in a text message to the paper: 'Indian Police will act. Process is on for issue of a Red Corner Notice.'

Such a notice would request Interpol to seek the arrest of someone with a view to their extradition. Efforts to find out more information about the exact steps they plan to take have proven fruitless.

The case has raised questions as to how easy it can be for those wanted on criminal charges in another country to evade the courts by living in the United Kingdom.

The Muslim couple had an arranged marriage in Bangalore, now known as Bengaluru, in May 2010.

A week before the wedding, Mr Hussain's family allegedly demanded expensive gifts and jewellery in payment of dowry, a serious crime in India. This is something he denies.

Shortly after their wedding the couple moved to Norfolk, where Mr Hussain had been living since 2007, and she claims this is when his behaviour worsened. She returned to Bengaluru in October 2011 and severed contact with her husband, later filing for divorce.

Do you have a story for the Investigations Unit? Contact David Powles on 01603 772478 or email david.powles@archant.co.uk

FAIR TRIAL

Every person accused of a crime, whether in the UK or another country, has the right to a fair trial.

This, and for legal reasons, is why we chose in our original stories not to publish any of the evidential claims by either Mr Ahmed or Ms Khan.

The fact of the matter is that authorities in India have decided there is a case to answer, against what are serious charges. That is why we were happy to run the story, still giving both parties a fair chance to have their say.

As outlined in the original story, there are instances where dowry laws are being misused and used by disgruntled wives.

It is vital, therefore, should he return to India that Mr Ahmed is given a fair trial.

A group called Marital Justice, which claims to help men who are affected by the misuse of Dowry laws in India, has contacted the newspaper following our story and pledged to give Mr Hussain support should he chose to answer to the charges in India.

We have agreed to pass on their details should he get back in touch.

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