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Police questions Shoaib Malik, seize passport

Hyderabad/New Delhi, April 5 (IANS) Pakistani cricketer Shoaib Malik, who is to marry Indian tennis star Sania Mirza, was Monday grilled by police here and his passport was seized on a complaint of cheating filed by a Hyderabad resident who claims to be his first wife.

Police quizzed Shoaib for nearly two hours at Sania Mirza's home and seized his passport for investigations a day after booking a case of cheating, harassment and criminal intimidation against him on complaint of Ayesha Siddiqui.

The Central Crime Station (CCS) of police launched the probe by questioning Shoaib, recording statement of Ayesha and identifying 10 to 15 witnesses.

Police, who have alerted immigration authorities not to allow Shoaib to fly out of the country, also conveyed the details of the case to the central government while the cricketer claimed that the Pakistani high commissioner in New Delhi spoke to him over phone and assured all possible legal assistance.

Police Commissioner A.K. Khan told reporters Monday evening, "If it becomes necessary to arrest somebody we will arrest. But it will be based on how the case evolves and what sort of evidences we come across."

Accompanied by Sania Mirza, Shoaib, former captain of Pakistan cricket team, spoke to media persons outside her residence here and both declared they would marry here April 15 as scheduled.

"I am here for my marriage and to clear my name. I will, Inshallah, clear my name and am cooperating with the police and the Indian government. I will do everything," Shoaib told reporters here.

Facing a volley of questions, the Pakistani batsman maintained that he had done nothing wrong and hence there was no question of his apologising to anybody.

He also challenged Ayesha to come before the media, adding the world would know the truth once she comes out of the house.

"I have never met the girl whose photographs were sent to me. I don't know who is Ayesha. I used to call her (the girl who is claiming to be his first wife) Maha Apa, and 'Apa' means elder sister," Shoaib said.

"I am here, why doesn't she come before the camera. And I will answer all the questions."

"Nobody can touch me till charges against me are proved," he said when asked if he feared arrest.

A tense-looking Sania said she was upset over the allegations but claimed she knew the truth. "Our marriage will, Inshallah, take place on April 15. There is no question of postponing it," she said.

To questions by reporters that Ayesha alleged she had got pregnant after her "marriage" with him and had a "miscarriage", Shoaib said: "Let her first prove it, and then let's probe it."

In New Delhi, Shoaib's lawyer Ramesh Gupta said Malik had told him not to file for anticipatory bail since he was cooperating with the Hyderabad police.

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