Road accident in Jeddah derails family in Nellyadi

Last Updated 03 September 2009, 17:22 IST

Sulaiman from Nellyadi near here left the Indian shores in the beginning of last year, hoping to make some money for the weddings of his daughters.

Little did he imagine that his dreams would lay shattered in a shortwhile and instead he would have to mobilise a whopping Rs 75 lakh (Riyal 5.5 lakh) to walk a free man from a Saudi jail and that too for no fault of his.  But under the Saudi law, 54-year-old Sulaiman is an accused as his vehicle was involved in an accident in the Gulf.

Sulaiman, who was earlier working as a driver in Nellyadi, secured the visa with the help of a relative, Abdul Hadi Sanam, now residing in Saudi Arabia. He sold his five cents of land and house to raise Rs one lakh to fly to Saudi on January 26, 2008.

Shocking news awaited him when he landed in the Gulf and met Abdul Hadi Sanam. He was told that there was no job. After two months of struggle, he landed a job as a truck driver for one Bava Jaz Al Thaimi.

Even before Sulaiman started breathing easy, his troubles began. In the middle of last year, he had parked his truck on the Dhammam-Jeddah road to attend to nature’s call.
But before he could return to the truck, a car carrying six Saudi citizens had crashed into his vehicle, killing them on the spot.

Guilty of accident

Sulaiman was booked and arrested as under Saudi law, the driver of the bigger vehicle is considered guilty of causing the accident. A court in that country ordered Sulaiman to pay Riyal 5.5 lakh or face jail term. He has been languishing in jail for one and a half year and is cut off from the family.

Back at home, his 80-year-old mother, wife Jameela and five children are worried, and uncertain about their future. Residing in a rented house, they are struggling even for a square meal.

The family learnt about the incident through other drivers. “My husband, who had gone to earn money, is in jail for no fault of his. Leave alone Rs 75 lakh, I am not in a position to earn Rs 75. I want my husband to come back as soon as possible,” Jameela said.

She has already written letters to the President, the State Governor, External Affairs Minister S M Krishna, Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa and local MLA, asking them to intervene and rescue her husband.

(Published 03 September 2009, 17:22 IST)

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