'Homeless' Pak family begs Dubai police to jail them in bid to 'fight starvation'
A Pakistani family of four, including an eight-month pregnant woman and two children aged four and two, has begged before Dubai authorities to send them behind bars so that they don't have to starve to death.
Rendered homeless and penniless after a series of catastrophic events, Ishtiaq Hussain, 34, approached Bur Dubai police station with the bizarre request on October 21 - the day his landlord threw them out over unpaid rent.
"I had no money and the kids were hungry. So we went to the police and pleaded with them to put us behind bars. I thought we'll at least get a roof over our heads and some food," he said.
"But they turned us away. We spent two nights in a park on near-empty stomachs before an acquaintance took pity on us and gave my wife and kids temporary shelter and food in his house. While they stayed with him, I roughed it out in a nearby park," Ishtiaq added.
"We are surviving on handouts. The other day some people gave us some food and money. I don't know how long it will last us. I have exhausted all my resources and have no one to turn to now. I could have sold my belongings, but they have been confiscated by our former landlord to settle my unpaid rent. The clothes we are wearing is just about all that we have," Gulf news quoted Husain, as saying.
Husain said his trouble began when he married a woman outside his religion and country.
"I am paying a price for falling in love," he said.
Before she converted from Sikhism to Islam, Zainab was known as Gurinder Kaur and used to live in Amritsar, India.
She came to Dubai in April 2007 to visit her uncle who owned a company where Husain was employed at a Dh1,800 salary.
After Zainab's uncle learned the truth he sacked Husain and put up an absconding notice against him.
Husain claimed the authorities have told him they will consider waiving off their fines if he gets a job offer letter from a company.