Indian Student Found Deceased In US After Being Missing For A Month

25-year-old Mohammad Abdul Went To Ohio In 2023 For Master’s

The Indian consulate in New York has confirmed the devastating news that 25-year-old Mohammad Abdul Arfath, an Indian student pursuing a Master’s degree at Cleveland State University in the United States, has been found dead. Arfath had been missing for nearly three weeks before his tragic demise was confirmed by the consulate today. His untimely death marks the 11th such incident involving Indian students in the US this year, sparking shock and worry among the Indian student community and their families back in India.

Arfath, originally from Hyderabad, had moved to the US in 2023 to pursue a Master’s degree in Information Technology from Cleveland University. His family had last heard from him on March 7, after which his phone was switched off, raising concerns about his whereabouts. On March 19, Arfath’s family received a ransom call demanding $1,200 for his release, claiming that he had been kidnapped by a gang involved in drug trafficking.

In a heart-wrenching account, Arfath’s father, Mohammed Saleem, shared details of the ransom call with news agency PTI. “I got a call from an unknown number, and the caller informed me that my son had been kidnapped and demanded money. The caller did not mention the mode of payment but just asked to pay the amount. When I asked the caller to allow us to talk to my son, he refused,” Mr. Saleem revealed.

The Indian consulate in New York had been actively involved in the search operation for Arfath, coordinating with local law enforcement agencies. Upon the confirmation of his death, the consulate expressed deep anguish and offered condolences to Arfath’s family. “Anguished to learn that Mohammed Abdul Arfath, for whom a search operation was underway, was found dead in Cleveland, Ohio,” the consulate said in a statement.

Efforts are now underway to facilitate the transportation of Arfath’s mortal remains back to India. The consulate assured that they are in touch with local authorities in the US to ensure a thorough investigation into the circumstances surrounding Arfath’s death.

This tragic incident adds to a string of similar occurrences involving Indian students in the US this year. Just last week, another Indian student in Ohio, Uma Satya Sai Gadde, passed away, further highlighting the alarming rise in such incidents. The Indian-American community has been deeply concerned about the safety and well-being of Indian students pursuing education in the US.

Arfath’s family had also reached out to External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar, urging for assistance in locating and bringing back Arfath to India. As investigations continue into the circumstances of his death, the Indian student community mourns the loss of yet another promising life, leaving behind grieving family and friends both in the US and India.