Nelson shopkeeper’s battle to rescue brother (7) from Pakistan

A CHEF has almost won the custody for his brother after the rest of his family were killed in a car crash in Pakistan.

But now Abid Ali, who works as a chef in the Ribble Valley, is facing an appeal launched by far-related relatives in Pakistan who want to keep seven-year-old Qasim Mohammed Akbar away from Abid.

As reported earlier in Leader Times Newspapers, former Nelson shopkeeper Mr Ali Akbar Khan (59) was driving when the family’s car ploughed into a parked truck near Faisalabad in the Punjab province.

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Also travelling with Mr Khan - who had run the Food, Booze and Video shop in Leeds Road which is now the Spar shop - were his wife, Riffit Rukhsana, daughters Aisha (eight), two-year-old Hajira and his son, Qasim.


Qasim is the sole survivor of the accident, which happened in the New Year. Mr Khan’s son from his first marriage, Abid Ali, immediately flew out to Pakistan upon hearing the devastating news and has remained in the country since fighting to bring Qasim home. Although the father-of-four thought he had won, a judge has now made an order forbidding Abid from taking Qasim out of Pakistan.

Speaking about the family’s ordeal, close family friend Mr Asif Din said: “We are all worried for the safety of Qasim and Abid. Qasim has lost his parents and his sisters and he needs some stability and normality in his life.

“He was born in England and attended school here so he should return back to this country. The relatives in Pakistan don’t understand that Qasim has already been through enough.

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“Although Abid won the custody battle, the family launched an appeal against the decision and therefore Abid is not allowed to fly back to England with Qasim.

“He has to wait until another decision in made. All this is taking a lot of time and we have not received a lot of help from the British Government.”

Abid has been in contact with the British Embassy in Pakistan and the Foreign Office in London to try and help him fight the new case.