As gunmen unleashed terror at two mosques in New Zealand’s Christchurch, among the many who were shot at was Hyderabad-native Ahmed Iqbal Jahangir. Jahangir was rushed to a hospital and is battling for his life. His family has now appealed to the Centre and the Telangana government to expedite the visa process of his brother, Khursheed, so that he can travel to Christchurch and tend to his brother while he undergoes treatment.
Speaking to TNM, his brother, Mohammed Khursheed Jahangir, said, "He has been in New Zealand for almost 12 years now and he owns a restaurant there which offers Hyderabadi cuisine. He went for his Friday prayers. Two of his friends were killed in the attack. My brother himself is struggling for his life. We are not able to get any proper news about what is happening over there. He has a wife and two children; one aged 3 and one aged 5."
Khursheed said that the last time Iqbal visited home was around six to seven months ago.
"He kept calling frequently. I spoke to him last week as well. We are nine brothers and five sisters. We didn't expect this at all, that too in a place like New Zealand, which is said to be a safe place with low crime rates. It is very unfortunate and my mother has been inconsolable since she heard the news. We are all afraid," he added.
Khursheed Jahangir reached out to Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi, who in turn, reached out to TRS Working President KT Rama Rao over Twitter.
A video from #ChristChurch shows one Ahmed Jehangir who was shot. His brother Iqbal Jehangir is a resident of Hyderabad & would like to go to NZ for Ahmed’s family.— Asaduddin Owaisi (@asadowaisi) March 15, 2019
I request @KTRTRS @TelanganaCMO @MEAIndia @SushmaSwaraj to make necessary arrangements for the Khursheed family
Asad Saab, Will request our NRI department to assist https://t.co/wFHiUnELHH— KTR (@KTRTRS) March 15, 2019
We are shocked to hear about the shooting in #Christchurch Any Indians needing assistance should contact us at 021803899 or 021850033. @indianweekender @indiannewslink @MEAIndia @IndianDiplomacy @WIAWellington @kohli_sanjiv @BhavDhillonnz— India in New Zealand (@IndiainNZ) March 15, 2019
"The family only wants the government to expedite the visa to New Zealand. We will get his tickets done and everything. The brother needs to reach there as soon as possible. Jahangir's wife will have to take care of two small children and they will need help," Owaisi told TNM.
On Friday, two mosques in New Zealand were attacked by gunmen who carried out a mass shooting. The police said that a man dressed in black with a helmet walked into the back of the Linwood mosque and began firing at people praying in the mosque, killing at least 30 worshipers. At the same time, the Al Noor mosque which was also located in Christchurch, New Zealand, came under attack by another gunman. It was reported that at least 49 people were killed and several others injured in both attacks combined.
Witnesses said there were around 400 people in the Al-Noor Mosque at the time of the attack and they ran for their lives after hearing gunshots. Around 100 were there in Linwood Avenue Mosque, the second mosque targeted.
New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern called the killings a terror attack and one of New Zealand's darkest days.