Missing: Three bankers kidnapped

Car found in Bin Qasim Town.

Faraz Khan May 31, 2011


Three bankers, including two State Bank of Pakistan directors, are believed to have been kidnapped from Bin Qasim Town on Tuesday. The police and the families fear the kidnappers have abducted them for ransom.

SBP’s public relations director, Najamul Saqib, the central bank’s deputy director of marketing, Nadeem Bhurgri and the senior vice president of a private bank, Asif Shehzad, went missing while they were returning from the Arabian Sea Country Club.

According to officials, they went to the club on Monday at around 7:30 pm for dinner and left around 9:30 pm but never came home. Their white Toyota Camry was found from the bushes near Pakistan Steel Mills, Bin Qasim Town, at 9:15 am on Tuesday.

The Bin Qasim police have registered FIR No. 112/11 under Section 365/34 on behalf of Saqib’s brother, Asif. “We only registered the charge of kidnapping in the FIR,” said the on-duty officer, Abdul Ghafoor. “The ransom Section will be imposed if the kidnappers make any demand.”

The complainant, Asif, told the police, “We are bankers, not bureaucrats. We do not have any enmities and we do not threaten anyone.”

The State Bank spokesperson also confirmed that the bankers are missing. “I can only confirm that two of the SBP employees are missing from Monday night,” he said.

Meanwhile, the police was clueless about the kidnapping site. “Maybe they were abducted from where the car was found. The suspects could have kidnapped them from some other place and left the car in the bushes later,” said Ghafoor. He said the police did not find anything from the car that could help them find out its owner. “There were no mobile phones, wallets, cards or anything else.” The area where the car was found is a deserted one with no settlement nearby. Population settlements start seven to eight kilometres from the place.

About the involvement of any particular group, Ghafoor said that such a case has not been reported in the past and therefore the police have no information. The case has been transferred to the Anti-Violent Crime Unit (AVCU), which is working with the Citizens-Police Liaison Committee. “We tried to contact the three bankers but their cell phones are switched off,” said AVCU chief SSP Farooq Awan. The police are trying to locate the cell phones, which is possible with sophisticated equipment even if the phones are switched off.

Published in The Express Tribune, June 1st, 2011.


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