AJWAIN, India — The day Ajwains story began, she was waiting for a plane back to New York from Lahore.
When she returned to New Delhi, her phone rang.
It was from the Indian consulate.
She was told she would be sent to Pakistan.
The United States was the last country she wanted to leave.
She would not leave.
She is still haunted by the experience.
She told the Indian media she will never return to India.
It would be better to be a guest, she said.
But she also told The Wall St. Journal she did not want to stay forever.
Her father, a professor at the University of California at San Diego, who was in Pakistan at the time, helped her make that decision.
When her family finally arrived in New Delhi in June 2018, the Indian authorities gave her a new identity card.
Then she could move back home.
But there were still questions.
What would happen to Ajwani’s children, she asked?
And why would she not be able to visit her parents in Pakistan?
The answer came from a man in her family.
When he called, he told her he was going to visit Ajwans parents in Lahore and then she would not have to worry about getting married.
A year later, she got married to him.
Ajwani now lives in a home in the northern city of Hyderabad.
She is a teacher at a school for students from the northeast, where she grew up.
She says her family had problems with corruption in Pakistan but she didn’t want to become a part of it.
The only way to fix that is by taking a risk and being a journalist, she told The Associated Press.
Her father, she says, always told her: Don’t let your fears get in the way of doing your job.
She had a plan to move to Pakistan and get married.
She and her husband got engaged on Oct. 7, 2017, in the middle of the night.
They had never planned to spend so much time together, she remembers thinking.
They were just getting started.AJWANI, Pakistan (AP) She says the first thing she wanted was to get married and to give birth to her first child.
She also wanted to travel to Lahore, her hometown, to meet the family.
The Pakistani government had granted Ajwan a visa to travel in the United States.
She thought she could be part of the family’s happiness.
She was in a rush.
But the Pakistani government’s decision to cancel her visa was not good news.
She did not think her visa would be revoked because of her work.
Her family still has no idea why the visa was canceled.
They did not know the reason, but she was devastated when she learned it.
Her passport was confiscated.
She said she was not allowed to leave Pakistan.
She believes the government knew she was going back there.
Her family has not heard from her since.
She says her mother, a social worker, had her travel documents stamped, but the Pakistani consulate never sent them to her.
Ajwins family does not know where the documents are.
She thinks the consulate should have sent them in time for her to return.
Ajitwani said she wanted a child.
Her daughter, who she married a year later in New York, is five.
She has learned a lot about her daughter, but what she wants most is to be able for her, the mother, to visit their family.
In a world where we have to be careful with what we say to each other, she added, “The one thing I do not want is for someone to come in my face and say, ‘I’m going to kill you, you are a terrorist.'”
She said she has been afraid to say her mother’s name in public.
She fears she will be labeled a terrorist.
She and her mother have spoken to a judge in Lahora.
She hopes to have her visa reinstated soon.
Ajewani was born in Lahota, Pakistan, in 1986 and grew up in the northwestern part of town, near the border with India.
Her parents were refugees who fled Pakistan in 1947, but eventually settled in Hyderabad and became citizens.
Her mother’s family in Lahores, Pakistan’s second largest city, said she is not related to the family of the slain cleric, Mohammad Fazlul Haq.
They said she had no connections with the militant group.