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Tuesday, May 24, 2022

Do you know Saleem? Brummie man looking for long-lost uncle Saleem in Bradford

The Raja family have been looking for Saleem since the 1990s.

A man from Birmingham is searching for his uncle who was born in Bradford in the early 1960s.

Sikander Raja, 36, is looking for his father’s half-brother, who he believes is called Saleem.

Mr Raja and his family believe that Saleem was born in the early 1960s, possibly in 1963, to his grandfather, Raja Ali Qadar, and a white woman, called June.

Raja Ali Qadar lived in Bradford for the best part of ten years.

Mr Qadar moved from Quillah, a small village close to Sohawa, in Pakistan, in 1960, and stayed in Bradford up until 1969 or 1970, before moving to London.

Mr Qadar worked for a cotton ginning factory in the district. Mr Qadar and June were not married, but they lived for some time at 3 Salt Lane, just off Lumb Lane in BD8 which is now demolished.

Mr Raja’s father, Akhtar Raja, 78, never met his half-brother but has been thinking about him for decades.

The search for Saleem began in the 1990s when Akhtar Raja came close to finding his half-brother but to no success.

After battling Covid-19 and approaching his 80th birthday, it is important to Akhtar Raja and his family to track down his long-lost little brother before it is too late. Saleem would be in his early 60s, now.

Sikander Raja said: “My dad came to Britain in 1972 from Pakistan, just after the relationship ended between my grandfather and June. When he came over, he found out that he had a half-brother called Saleem.

Akhtar Raja, now 78, is looking for his brother.

“When my dad left Pakistan, he moved straight to London because it is where my grandfather was at the time. The search began in the early 1990s as before then, my dad was busy raising us kids, and it wasn’t easy getting to Bradford.

“My dad came close to potentially finding him. My father and another relative were in a café on Lumb Lane and they were told a Saleem had just left five minutes ago.

“Saleem is a quite common name, so we don’t know whether it was him or somebody else.”

The Brummie added: “In about 2012, I contacted a company to see if they could trace my uncle, and they suggested to look through birth records, but I was told that chances are, his mother registered him with a different name.

“Saleem always comes up in conversations. People say that it might not be a good thing to find him, but it is one of those chapters that you would like to close. My father got Covid-19 quite badly last year which has invigorated our search.”

If you know Saleem, or somebody who could possibly be Saleem, please contact Sakander.raja@outlook.com or shawna@asianstandard.co.uk. Saleem may have been given a different name.



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