Ameya Santosh
Ameya Santosh Image Credit: Supplied

Sharjah: Ameya Santosh, the Indian boy who went missing from Sharjah on Friday morning, has been found, family sources told Gulf News.

Some students spotted him just a while ago, his family said at 4pm.

“He is fine. He didn’t have money, He was surviving on water. We are waiting for him to be produced in the police station,” said his aunt.

As reported by Gulf News, the grade 10 student of an Indian-curriculum school Sharjah had gone missing after he went for tuition and his parents said that he might have run away due to exam pressure.

The family had sent out appeals on social media and also lodged a complaint with Sharjah Police to find the boy.

Earlier in the day, the family had warned people not to believe fake news on social media claiming he had been found.

As the family and friends continued the search for the 15-year-old boy, a WhatsApp message, which says he has been found, went viral.

Ameya Santhosh's
Ameya Santhosh's family says the teen remains missing. The parents appealed to social media users to stop sharing the fake news. Image Credit: Screengrab

“We have been getting many calls asking if it is true. We really don’t know how to stop people from spreading this fake news,” Ameya’s aunt told Gulf News at the time.

She said the phones of Ameya’s parents had been continuously busy with calls from people who wished to help find him and also those who wanted to verify the news that he had been found.

Languages he speaks

The Keralite parents raised in Maharashtra are were seeking help from those working in groceries and cafeterias in various areas in Sharjah as a couple of people had reportedly seen him at a grocery and a cafeteria.

“At first a student in his tuition class informed the tutor that he had seen Ameya in a grocery behind the building where he went for tuition,” said the aunt, who came with her husband from Abu Dhabi to search for the boy.

Ameya was last seen in a CCTV camera footage from that area, she said.

Later, she said, the family also heard that some other students had reportedly seen Ameya in a cafeteria near Al Nahda Park.

“We hope WhatsApp messages in Malayalam might help in spreading this information among the Keralites working in groceries and cafeterias as we think he might approach them for food and speak in Malayalam. He speaks English, Hindi and Marathi also.”

However, the aunt said Ameya is generally a shy child. “He doesn’t speak much. Usually he wouldn’t go and ask for help from strangers. His mobile was not charged the day before. Maybe his phone is off as there is no charge and he wouldn’t usually ask people for help to charge it.”

Earlier on Saturday, the aunt said, a cleaner at Sharjah City Centre had said he had seen a boy like Ameya in the mall. However, a search for him inside the mall didn’t find any positive result till midnight. “The security team there has sent out his photo and details on WhatsApp to all the security personnel in the mall.”

Earlier reports

An Indian family in Sharjah has appealed to find a teenager who, according to his parents, has run away due to exam phobia.

Ameya Santosh, a grade 10 student in Sharjah, went missing after he went for tuition class on Friday morning, his mother Bindu Santosh told Gulf News on Saturday night.

“His father had dropped him. I had messaged the tuition sir to let me know when the class gets over around 12 noon. But he said Ameya didn’t reach the class. When we checked the CCTV we found that he didn’t enter the building.”

She said the 15-year-old, the elder one of two children, suffers from exam phobia. “His pre-board exams are going on now. Tomorrow is science exam. I think he might have decided not to come home so that he can skip the exam.”

The mother denied the parents were pressurising him.

She said Ameya generally finds Maths, Physics and Chemistry very difficult. Since there is a new provision to opt out one subject, she said, Ameya had opted out Maths.

“Since he is in grade 10, he somehow has to complete this year to change his subjects. We are anxiously waiting for him. We are not bothered about any exam. We just want him to come home. We are worried if anything wrong will happen to him,” the concerned mother said, appealing to her son to return home and urging the public to help find him.

Ameya was wearing a parrot green T-shirt, navy blue three-fourth trousers and was carrying his purple backpack with books when he left home. His mobile is switched off and he has hardly any money with him, the mother said.

“My brother and sister-in-law came from Abu Dhabi to search for him. Some cleaners in Sharjah City Centre told them they had seen a boy looking like him. So, my husband has also gone there. We hope he is somewhere nearby and he might be coming to the mall to have food,” she said, seeking help from the mall-goers as well.

The family lives in Abu Shagara. They said they had searched for him with all his friends and neighbouring areas and also lodged a complaint with Al Garb Police Station.

Sharjah Police has assured support to the family and started the investigation, the mother said.