The 56-year-old has no one to help him, save for a Pakistani friend, who assists him in getting around. After living and working in the United States for 21 years, 56-year-old Mohammed Abdul Waheed Khan moved to the UAE in 2014 in the hopes of launching his own hotel business. A former employee
The 56-year-old has no one to help him, save for a Pakistani friend, who assists him in getting around.
After living and working in the United States for 21 years, 56-year-old Mohammed Abdul Waheed Khan moved to the UAE in 2014 in the hopes of launching his own hotel business.
A former employee of Wells Fargo bank in San Fernando Valley in California, Khan is a green card holder, and his three children are US citizens.
“I went to the US when I was 19. I moved to the UAE because I wanted to live and do business in a Muslim country,” Khan told Khaleej Times. Unfortunately, fate took a cruel twist for this Indian expatriate from Hyderabad.
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After being cheated by his former business associates, Khan’s dreams failed to take off, causing his health to take a turn for the worse. Alongside fighting several legal battles, he now suffers from advanced renal failure, secondary to his long-standing hypertension and Type 2 diabetes mellitus.
Due to partial paralysis of the lower limbs, the expat is now a wheelchair user. With his family is currently stranded in India, Khan lives in a hotel apartment in Bur Dubai, which is paid for by his friends and family back home.
“I have no one to help me here. The only person taking care of me is my Pakistani friend Mohammed Mahmoud who runs a textile shop in Meena Bazaar in Bur Dubai. I am at his mercy. I need help to even stand up after using the bathroom, and he has been helping me through all this,” said Khan.
A series of unfortunate events
Khan had partnered with another compatriot businessman and taken out a lease to launch a hotel in Deira. “We have a restaurant and catering business back home in India. I figured I’d launch a similar business here. I signed a contract with two partners, took out the lease for three years and issued 12 cheques worth Dh800,000 each,” he explained.
“A while later, I found out that my Indian partner was jailed for separate legal issues he was facing. I never heard from him after that. The rental amount for the first three months was supposed to be paid by him,” he said.
“The property was never officially handed over to me, and I could never launch it. However, the third partner deposited the cheques I had given, either way, causing them to bounce, and I’ve been in legal trouble ever since.”
Khan’s legal representative Malik Shahzad, a legal consultant and administrative director with Ahmed Al Husaini Lawyers and Legal Consultants, told Khaleej Times, “We have been representing Khan for a year-and-a-half now. He had to discontinue services with us because he couldn’t afford to pay for them any longer. However, I met him a few months ago and saw the condition he was in, and we decided to help him pro bono.”
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According to Shahzad, a lot of people Khan was doing business with cheated him, leading to his current situation.
Khan has three cheque bounce cases that have been filed against him. However, he can lift the travel ban on him by paying the outstanding fines to the court.
“His current conditions are appalling. Once he pays legal fines, he can leave. We can ensure that no one will initiate any civil cases against him,” said Shahzad.
Khan’s health is also a matter of serious concern. According to his medical records, a copy of which Khaleej Times has seen, both of Khan’s kidneys failed in November last year, causing him to be put on hemodialysis twice a week.
He has also been diagnosed with diabetic neuropathy, which has made both his legs weak.
“I don’t have medical insurance. For the last two months, Dar al Ber has been kindly paying for my medical treatment. All other costs have to be borne by me, and I cannot afford it,” a desperate Khan said.
“I want to go back home to my family, but I cannot do that because I have to pay outstanding legal fines amounting to Dh48,000 at least. I cannot afford the medical bills here any longer,” he appealed.
Originally from India, Dhanusha Gokulan has been working as a journalist for over ten years. For Khaleej Times, she covers NRI affairs, civil aviation, and immigration issues among other things. She completed her BA in Journalism, Economics and English Literature from Mangalore University in 2008 and is currently pursuing her MA in Leadership and Innovation in Contemporary Media at the American University in Dubai. In her spare time, she dabbles with some singing/songwriting, loves food, and is mom to an over-enthusiastic Labrador retriever. Tweet at her @shootsprintrite.