Relatives mourn the death of Faizan Haider who was killed in a shooting after retrieving his body from a hospital in Lahore on January 28, 2011. — Photo by AFP

LAHORE, Jan 31: Neighbours of slain Faizan and Fahim are not ready to believe that the youths could have robbed any one, as claimed by Raymond Davis.

Faizan Haider, 22, hailed from Al-Madad Colony on Ravi Road. He was running a cosmetics shop at Qilla Luxman Singh. He left the school when he was in class five.

According to his family, Faizan was married two months ago. On Jan 27 (the day he was shot dead), he was returning from a local court after attending the hearing of his brother's murder case. He was armed since he feared a possible ambush from the killers of his brother.

His friend Fahim, 17, lived in Ilam Din Colony, Begum Kot, where his family rented a house seven months ago. Working in a factory, he was married some six months ago.

“I am really surprised to know the allegation against Faizan Haider. I know the guy and his family very well for the last over two decades. How a person who never had committed even a petty crime could be a robber or thief?” said Muhammad Aslam, a vegetable seller in Al-Madad Colony.

Other neighbours, including Haji Ali Shah, another shopkeeper, Tahir Farooq, a military officer and Atta Muhammad, a Desi Ghee supplier, described Faizan as a noble soul from a respectable family of the area.

Shah said he had never seen Faizan wandering in the colony streets. Farooq said the youth, though not well educated, was well mannered. Atta was not ready to believe that Faizan could commit a dacoity since his family was well-off in the colony. “I know this family for the last 40 years as they are used to do cooking in Desi Ghee,” Atta said.

In Ilam Din Colony, neighbours Dawn talked to had similar views about Fahim.

Haji Nazir Ahmad, a businessman living near Fahim's house, said the boy worked in a factory to support his family. He said he had never heard any thing suspicious against him.

Firdaus Bibi, a housewife, said Fahim's family had rented the house in this area some seven months ago and she had not seen them doing any thing wrong.

Salma Bibi, a shopkeeper, said though Fahim was a member of a poor family, she had not seen him sitting in the company of street urchins.

Other neighbours, including Asghar Ali, Ikram Hassan and Talib Hussain, also denied hearing anything against Fahim and his family.

The names of Fahim and Faizan also do not exist in the criminal record of Factory Area and Ravi Road police stations.