Pakistani millionaire who lost everything, became labourer in UAE

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An overseas Pakistani has gone from owning a million-dirham business in Sharjah to becoming a labourer at a junk yard after he lost over Dh500,000 in an alleged scam, Khaleej Times reported.

As per the details, Asghar Hussain and his family’s lives were turned upside down in late 2008, when an Indian con artist forged his signatures on legal company papers and fled the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Asghar, his wife and four kids, aged 15 to 23, have had to live with the dire consequences that followed the incident. By 2013, Asghar was no longer able to keep his business going as he was unable to pay bank loans.

His children were kicked out of school in 2014 for not paying the fees – they remain without an education till this day.

Their residence, which used to be a large two-bedroom apartment, is now a small, unfurnished room. They sleep on the floor, hang their clothes on a dirty ladder, and have their belongings stored away in worn-out cardboard boxes.

“My children haven’t been to school in almost five years,” the mother, Farah Gull, told Khaleej Times. “I have knocked on so many doors, asking charities if they can at least help us with school, but we were turned away.”

The family still owes the school, the Pakistan Islamia Higher Secondary School in Sharjah, about Dh20,000.

“My mother died when I was living here illegally, so I couldn’t even go to see her one last time. My wife’s parents died and she couldn’t go either. It really breaks our hearts,” Ashgar said.

Going back home to Lahore was not an option for them as the parents sold their home and all of their belongings to pay for their failing business, rent and school fees.

Asghar has managed to secure a temporary job at a junk yard, where he and his 23-year-old son work as labourers, earning less than Dh500 per month.

“It’s not a life I imagined for myself and my kids, but we have to produce some kind of income for the home. I have a wife, three daughters and a son that I have to take care of. I refuse to beg on the streets, but I will do a job of a labourer if I have to earn cash for my family,” he said.

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