Sahil Saeed Naqash, from Oldham, Greater Manchester, was on holiday with his family in the Punjab region of Pakistan when he was kidnapped and held captive for 12 days. The kidnappers had told Sahil’s father, Raja Naqqash Saeed, to travel first to Manchester then to Paris to hand over the ransom money of £110,000 which was paid to secure the release of five year old Sahil Saeed. Kidnapping in Pakistan and ransom payment in Paris, am I reading a suspense novel?
Finally a dramatic international police operation results in the release of Sahil Saeed and detained those involved in his kidnapping. Three people, two Pakistani men and a Romanian woman were arrested in Spain, two in Paris and a further three in Pakistan. The arrests followed a closely-coordinated surveillance operation involving police in Britain, France, Spain and Pakistan.
Meanwhile Sahil was found by locals wandering in a field unharmed after 12 days. On 16 March Sahil was left near a school about 20km (12 miles) from Jhelum. Sahil was kept in a village where he was given a cycle and toys to play with. He was handed over to Pakistani police and then to British High Commission in Islamabad where he re-unites with his father today. It is indeed a time to rejoice for the family although many questions about the thrilling event remain a mystery. It has also been alleged that someone close from the family could be involved in the kidnapping.
What would be the result if a Pakistani boy was kidnapped or if Sahil Saeed was not a British national?
Dawn editorial on the issue quotes;
Sahil’s nationality and the focused attention of the international media led to cooperation being offered by the Greater Manchester Police of Britain and diplomatic channels. Other such victims and their families are not so fortunate. In the first two months of this year alone, 240 people were kidnapped across the country; only 74 have so far been recovered. While not all are kidnappings for ransom, the onus remains on the law-enforcement agencies to trace the victims and bring the perpetrators of the crimes to justice. Most of the families of children and adults who have been missing for far longer than Sahil have neither diplomatic support nor pledges of assistance. They deserve similar attention from the government and law-enforcement authorities.
Image: The first post