Dubai's good Samaritan, social media reunite missing man with family

Dubais good Samaritan, social media reunite missing man with family

Dubai - The 26-year-old from Kerala's Kasargod district was missing since January 30 from Deira

By Anu Warrier

Published: Sat 6 Jan 2018, 5:31 PM

Last updated: Sun 7 Jan 2018, 8:18 AM

Act of a good Samaritan and the social media helped find a missing young man in Dubai.

It all started when Umar Al Farooq, an Indian from the state of Kerala who resides in Al Barsha, was told on Wednesday by the security staff of a nearby park about a man found in the park for two days. After identifying that the young man is also from Kerala, Farooq tried to talk to him.

"It was by 3pm on Wednesday. He was in a very bad state, wearing soiled clothes, with signs of depression. He was sleeping outside the rest room in the park, out in the cold, the security person had told me. As I approached him, he tried to run away, but later when I asked his name he answered my questions. He was repeating that he had no one," said Farooq.

When Farooq asked him whether he had food, the man didn't reply. But when he was offered food, he grabbed it. "It was like he hadn't eaten for days. When I tried to take a photo he refused to show his face. However, I managed to take a video and uploaded it in some WhatsApp groups, requesting to identify the man." By the time the video was taken, the man managed to flee the place.

The video went viral soon and within 10 minutes, Farooq received a call from some friends of the man. He was told that the 26-year-old from Kerala's Kasargod district was missing since January 30 from Deira. He was working in a supermarket's sales department and was staying with his colleagues.

The man's uncle and some friends reached Al Barsha and they started searching for him. The search continued for almost 24 hours and he was found in another place in Barsha, 2km away from the park, said Farooq.

"He was spotted in a sandy area by some others who saw the video. They informed me and I reached the place immediately. It was like getting an old friend back after years," said Farooq.

A friend of the man, who wished to remain anonymous, said it was luck that the family got him back. "He was very close to his father who died six months ago. After returning from his father's funeral, he was very depressed.

"He was working in a firm in Al Khail for the past four years and two months ago, he moved to a job in Deira.

"We don't know what made him flee from his workplace. However, after we talked to him, he started behaving normally and regrets his act."

His family is thankful to the kind act of Umar Al Farooq and his friends, which helped them get his friend back. The family is planning to send the man back home this week after providing preliminary counselling sessions in Dubai.

Umar Al Farooq told Khaleej Times that the company where the man worked had filed a missing case, which was withdrawn after he was found.

Impact of social media

Umar Al Farooq, the good samaritan who helped finding the man, said the incident proved the impact of social media. "I started receiving calls from many people after I posted the video. Unfortunately, even after the man was found, people continue sharing the video in Facebook and other social media platforms.
"When the man went missing again after I posted the video, many people warned me that the entire incident would turn against me as I was the last person who saw him. I also got scared as he was in a deranged mental status. It's the family's luck that we managed to find him. The incident is also an inspiration for me and others to act with kindness."

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