Feroze reportedly stayed in this flat for less than two months.
As per the family, the police — who questioned them for 45 minutes — had brought with them a masked and handcuffed man whom they identified as Feroze, and asked the family whether or not he was their tenant. The police also reportedly seized some chemical, suspected to be ammonium nitrate, from the first-floor flat where suspected IM operatives had assembled explosives used in blasts on the Jangli Maharaj Road on August 1.
The man accompanying the police was short in height and slim in built, according to the family.
The police individually asked Shaikh, his wife Suraiya and their daughter if the man was Feroze to whom they had rented their flat for three months. Shaikh reportedly told them that he was not the man who stayed in his flat. His wife and daughter, too, said the same thing.
“This man was short. Those two men were tall, and one had long hair. The two men who had stayed in our flat were certainly taller than this man. If he were the man who stayed with us, we would have had no hesitation in identifying him,” said Suraiya.
Shaikh’s daughter said, “Without removing the mask the police asked us to identify him. This man was slim and short. The men who had stayed in our flat were tall and well-built. This man did not utter a single word.”
Suraiya said the police informed them that this man had claimed to have stayed in this flat. “We heard the policemen discussing that the material seized was ammonium nitrate,” said Shaikh’s daughter. She said the police told them that not just three men, who took the flat on rent, but also a few others stayed in this flat. “We usually saw two men. On Id-ul-Fitr, one of them had offered the room to our guests,” she said, claiming that a few days after Id, the men left without informing, and it was only after two-three days that the family realised that the tenants had left.
The family claimed to have asked their tenants to submit identity proofs. “They kept telling us that they will hand over ID proof in two-three days, which they never did. We had given the flat on rent after one of them told us that he was working in a mobile phone company. We have cooperated with the police and told them everything we knew. We have nothing to hide,” they said.