PESHAWAR: The brother of a provincial cabinet member has been kidnapped from near his home in an upper-income neighbourhood in Peshawar on Wednesday morning.
Syed Aftabul Hasan, brother of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Revenue Minister Syed Qalab-e-Hasan, was kidnapped from near his home in Hayatabad Phase 1, an upscale neighbourhood in Peshawar. Aftab is not an elected official and owns a match factory.
Aftab’s family says that he left for his routine morning walk at around 7 am but did not come back at his usual time. After about two hours, the family began to search for him. After looking for him for about an hour and failing to locate him, the family called the police.
“All of Aftab’s phones were off so we decided to call the police,” said one of the relatives, who asked not to be identified.
The police then brought sniffing dogs to assist in the search for Aftab, but the dogs were only able to trace his movements up to a nearby stream. “Perhaps from there Aftab was put into the car by the kidnappers,” conjectured one of the relatives.
Given his brother’s political affiliations and prominent government position, it had initially been assumed that Aftab was kidnapped by militants for ransom. However, a senior police official told The Express Tribune that the kidnapping appears to be the result of a dispute with a business associate.
“He [Aftab] has been kidnapped by his business partner over a financial dispute. [The kidnapper] even called the minister informing him that his brother would be released after the payment of the disputed amount,” said the police official, adding that Aftab had been taken to Lahore by his abductors.
“The kidnapper has been identified as Bari, a resident of Lahore and a businessman,” said the official.
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