NEIGHBOURS last night spoke of their shock after counter-terrorism police swooped on a family home.
Asim Kausar was arrested at his parents’ home in Bardon Close, Halliwell, on Wednesday evening.
It is understood the 25- year-old had recently returned from Pakistan, where he was visiting family.
Four police vans from the Greater Manchester Police Counter Terrorism Unit and a number of unmarked police cars surrounded the home at about 8pm.
Residents in the street said they were not told by police what was happening. Neighbours were yesterday shocked to hear of Mr Kausar’s arrest as his family — particularly his father, Nasim Kausar —
is well known and respected in the community.
Mr Kausar has lived in Bardon Close since he was born, along with his parents, his younger brother and two sisters.
The family own or rent about five houses in the close.
Mr Kausar attended Brownlow Fold Primary School and Sharples School.
Neighbour Janet Gardner, aged 53, said: “I am shocked, totally shocked.
When we saw the police, we thought it was something to do with a burglary as the family were burgled last week.
“Terrorism is the last thing we would have thought of.
“We aren’t worried because we have never seen anything suspicious and we would be totally shocked if he was involved.
“We couldn’t ask for better neighbours — one of the family has offered to take me to hospital and shopping.
“The kids are lovely and they are a really well mannered family.
“They have brought food around on plates when they have had a party.”
Joyce Roberts, aged 55, who has known the family for nearly 30 years, said: “They are a lovely family — their kids have grown up with my kids.
Mr Kausar will be mortified.
The children have always been so friendly.
“The family will bounce back from this. One of the neighbours had been ill and Mr Kausar took her to Christie’s—that is how nice they are.”
Another neighbour, who wanted to remain anonymous, said: “He was a lovely lad when he was younger, just like any one of the local lads.
I haven’t seen him for a long time.”
Halliwell Cllr Akhtar Zaman, who has known the family for several years, said: “I was very shocked to hear this.
“They are a very wellknown and well-liked family.”
Mr Kausar was last night in police custody while officers remained at the scene.
He is the brother-in-law of Toweer Akram, aged 35, who was killed in December, 2007, in the suicide attack which claimed the life of former Pakistani prime minister Benazir Bhutto.
Mr Akram’s widow, Lubna Saira Akram, lives with her two children in the same street.
A police spokesman said: “A 25-year-old man has been arrested under the Terrorism Act 2006.
The man remains in custody for questioning and searches will be carried out.”