Another dubious saga has made the case of missing persons murkier than ever before.
The Karachi police claimed on Monday that they have arrested three members of the banned Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA) for supplying arms to the Peoples Aman Committee in Lyari.
Now, there is a debate as to who they actually are.
The Voice for Baloch Missing Persons (VFBMP) said on Tuesday that the men – Abdul Ghaffar, Shamsullah and Saifal Bugti – were listed missing after they were ‘picked up’ in January from Quetta. But the Karachi police dispute the claim saying that the ambiguity has been created by the similarity of names.
According to the VFBMP, three students were whisked away near the University of Balochistan in January. It said their names were on a new list of 60 missing persons submitted to the Supreme Court.
VFBMP’s Chairman Nasrullah Baloch thinks that the arrest of these people is a cover-up by the police who had been directed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry to submit a progress report within two weeks.
However, CID SSP Chaudhry Aslam is adamant the men he has arrested are not the ones listed as missing. “I am not that stupid that I’ll claim to have arrested the men who are reported missing. Their names are not on the missing persons list. Rather, they are individuals with similar names and some quarters are trying to take advantage of that.”
According to the Anti-Extremist Cell (AEC) of the Crime Investigation Department, the men were arrested on a tip-off when they arrived in Karachi to deliver Russian-made rockets and other ammunition to the outlawed PAC.
Talking to The Express Tribune, the men in question admitted their alleged involvement. They said that they never studied at any university.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 9th, 2012.