Few days’ ago Blogger Mathai wrote about how Salmiya Block 10 has turned in to a dangerous place, an Indian citizen was dragged to his death by thieves pretending to be CID. Since then stories have been emerging about these thugs who have been routinely targeting expatriates from ordinary walk of life in broad day light. I have lived in Salmiya for the last two decades, if not for the occasional fights between Indian and Pakistani boys over cricket match Salmiya is really calm place, it has always given me a feeling that ‘I am home’, but not anymore, after that fateful incident everyone is shaken, the word is ‘if someone asks for your civil ID, do not fight just give it because it is not worth losing your life for couple of bucks’
The fear has set in so deep; I have stopped taking my kid to the garden in the evening as I feel it is not safe anymore to go out after dark. Also, despite of Salmiya block 10 having massive population of expatriates because of number of schools in the area, there are no police stations or even police cars patrolling the streets (In fact the entire 12 blocks of Salmiya has just ‘two’ police stations) With reputation of Kuwait police ever preceding them no one wants to take a risk of confronting these crooks.
Today I was at the barber shop, as the discussion turned into ‘current affairs’ the barber shared his story. Couple of day’s back he was talking to his wife on the phone while sitting on a chair outside the shop, a speeding car stopped inches away from the barber by narrowly missing him, already startled he quickly put the phone in his pocket. A huge guy (in dishdasha) got off the car and showed an ID card saying that he was “mobaais” (CID) and asked for barbers ID. Having found that he is a legal resident ‘the mobaais’ asked for the telephone which he had put in his pocket. The “CID” straight away accessed the pictures folder and found a ‘questionable’ picture of a woman and threatened to take the barber to the police station. Now, I am not sure what conversation that must have ensued since the barber dude barely speaks Arabic, ‘somehow’ the crook walked away with his phone. Surprisingly the CID also raided the adjacent restaurant immediately, used the same tactics and got away with couple more phones of restaurant staff.
Since this incident happened right below my building it has made me really nervous. Our maid usually waits downstairs to pick our son from the school bus in the afternoon, I am worried that these CID’s may attack her or my son or even ‘raid’ our house. Few years back we used to read horror stories of ‘Abbasiya’ where Indians lived (still live) under constant threat of being robbed, but now that Salmiya Block 10 is also facing the similar threat, I feel terribly sad, it feels like no place is safe for expatriates in Kuwait.