Missing since 2015: Family still looking for teen who disappeared

Published: January 3, 2017

ISLAMABAD: A poor family living in Golra is still looking for their teenage son, who mysteriously went missing in April 2014.

Imran, the missing boy, disappeared while working at his father’s pushcart, vending sugarcane near the Golra Railway Station on April 17, 2014. He was 14 at the time.

Imran’s father Pervaiz Khan would operate the cart around Maskeen Market, where Imran worked with him. On the day of the disappearance, he left Imran at the stall and went   home nearby to get some medicine. When he returned, he says he found Imran missing from the workplace.

The family, which hails from Mardan in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, looked for the boy for days and months. They also checked with all their relatives in Islamabad and Mardan but found no clue of Imran, who was the eldest of four siblings. He was in grade three when he quit school and started working with his father.

Last August, a non-governmental organisation working on the issue of missing persons helped the family in getting the case formally registered with the police. Golra police registered a kidnapping case against unidentified persons on August 25, almost 28 months after the boy’s disappearance.

The police say they have found no clue about the boy yet. “We don’t think the child was kidnapped but we are still investigating the case. We have not found any clues yet,” a police officer said.  Khan told The Express Tribune on Monday that the boy had a habit of running away from home. “He had run away to Multan, Lahore and Mardan on at least nine occasions. Mostly, he would be found by the authorities and sent home, but he never remained away from home for this long,” he said.

The ‘family business’ is the pushcart. Khan said that after Imran went missing, he looked for him for three months, during which he could not operate the cart. “We are still looking for him but I can’t afford to leave work because this is out mainstay … We are helpless,” he said. Police wrote letters to various jails, but the boy was not found in any of them, he said.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 3rd, 2017.

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