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After 20 Years, Hamida Bano Sees Her Family

By Rediff News Bureau
August 03, 2022 11:00 IST
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IMAGE: Hamida Bano speak to the media. All photographs: ANI Pic Service/ANI Photo

A woman from Mumbai who went missing 20 years ago after travelling abroad for work has been traced to Pakistan with the help of social media.

Hamida Bano (70), who lives in Hyderabad, Pakistan, managed to get in touch with her family in Kurla, north east Mumbai, recently after having left the city in 2002 to work as a house help in Dubai, reports PTI.

According to the woman's family, Waliullah Maroof, an activist in Pakistan, met Bano who told him how an agent in Mumbai cheated her with a promise of work in Dubai 20 years ago and she had landed in the neighbouring country instead.

Bano started living in Hyderabad, a major city in the Sindh province of Pakistan, and subsequently got married to a local man, with whom she had a child. But her husband later died, they said.

On hearing her story and of her yearning to go back home, Maroof uploaded Bano's video on his YouTube channel and looked for a social activist in Mumbai who could help him, and eventually found Khaflan Shaikh.

Shaikh then circulated the video in his group and tracked down Bano's daughter Yasmeen Bashir Shaikh, who lives in the Kasaiwada area of Kurla.

"My mother left India in 2002 for Dubai for work through an agent. However, because of the agent's negligence, she landed in Pakistan. We were unaware of her whereabouts and could get in touch with her only once through the same agent," Yasmeen said.

In the past, Bano had travelled to Qatar, to work as a house help, she said.

"We are happy that our mother is alive and safe. We now want the Indian government to help us bring her back," Yasmeen said.

The family plans to approach the Pakistan high commission to bring the septuagenarian back home safely.


IMAGE: Hamida Bano's family in Mumbai speak to her on a video call.


Photographs curated by Manisha Kotian/
Feature Presentation: Ashish Narsale/

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