Sunday 15 February 2009


As we have had more news recently, I thought this was a good time to give an update regarding my Uncle T’s situation in Pakistan and what really happened when he was abducted (1, 2, and 3). The abductors demanded £150,000, them £100,000 and then settled on £70,000 (or 7 million rupees) which the family managed to raise. They named various places in nearby towns and villages where a family member turned up with the money and waited all day to no avail. Finally they named a spot in a town a few hours drive away. My Uncle B went with the money and waited for a few hours before they turned up, took the money and tried to get him to get into their car also. At this point he was ill with stress and fear, exhausted and disheartened that he had lost all the money and still didn’t have his brother back. When they tried to push him into the car he thought his heart was going to stop.

Up until this point the Police had been asking the family not to give the money and to keep them involved. The gang who had kidnapped my uncle were suspected of having abducted and murdered a number of people and this might be a last chance for the Police to apprehend them. They had warned my family to ensure not a soul knew about the ransom and delivery of money. Because of this my mum and her siblings kept schtum and no-one, including me, knew what was happening.

Once the money was gone, out of sheer desperation Uncle B called his friend in the secret police and asked for help. They had suspected one of the nomadic Pushtun’s who stopped in the nearby mountains and arrested and interrogated him. He gave a contact in Karachi who was also a Pushtun who refused to speak until the Police threatened to pay his wife and daughters a visit. He agreed to call the kidnappers and tell them to release my uncle. They did so to the Khyber Police before escaping. On the same day there was a raid and a number of Al-Qaeda suspects were arrested. The police put the word out that these were the kidnappers of my Uncle T to make the kidnappers think they were away safe.

My Uncle B drove up to the north of the country with the Police to collect Uncle T and get him back home. He was extremely traumatized and unwell, half-starved and with strange knots under the skin of his arms. This is where he had been injected straight into the muscle with some kind of sedative. They headed back to Punjab to file a police report and spent the night in the town of Rawalpindi, the next day they headed home to Jhelum. My uncle says that thousands of people came out to greet them lining the route home for the last two or three miles. It took them four hours to greet everyone before they could get into the house to meet their hysterical family. The next few days were a celebration with food being provided for the whole village and all-comers for days. My granddad said his son had been born again and people felt as if someone had come back from the grave. But the joy was diluted. I spoke to my Uncle T the next day and he was still babbling. I spoke to his sister who lives here, Aunty S and she said that they could not leave him alone or he would break down and start crying.

The other problem was that most of the men were still at large and making threats and demanding that the two men who had been arrested be released. The police finally managed to get the story out of the nomad. His tribe has settled in the mountains that form a backdrop to our village and were periodically harbouring various wanted criminals there. Most people ignored them, but my family had given them Zakaat and old clothes. My Uncle T also drove into the mountains to deliver their groceries from his shop. One year he offered to help them sell their livestock and took the nomad to the other end of the country to Karachi where my Uncle B lives and who helped sell all the animals in time for Eid-ul-Adha. Whilst there he saw Uncle B’s curtain factory (which he built from nothing) and got greedy. On his return he met up with some of the criminals and hired some more men and formed the plan for the kidnap. The man who came to collect the money was from a town called Gujjerkhan and turned out to be an Imam. Three of the wanted men were brothers, two of whom were Hafiz (memorizers of the Quran).

It took the best part of another month to round up the rest of the men, during which the family decided to take Uncle T away to Karachi hoping a complete change of scene would help preserve his sanity. In the meantime a group of men in a car were driving past the village and shooting guns. They continued to call the family and demand their men were released. Eventually they were apprehended one night by Police who they told that they were looking for their stolen tractor (in the pitch dark of night). The Police took copies of their identity cards and let them go.

Two days ago my dad’s brother, Uncle I, called to tell us they had caught two of the brothers and that they were safe now. The news appeared on the independent Pakistani Geo news channel. It meant that my relatives in Pakistan could breathe easy at last. Uncle B and Uncle T are flying back to Punjab this week to make an identification.

These were the men who told my uncle that tell your family to pay up or you’re not worth the 10 rupees we have to spend on a bullet. These were also the same men who insisted at one point on speaking to Uncle T’s four year old daughter to ascertain family members were where they said they were. These were the men who had taken my uncle, made no contact for two weeks and then proceeded to call various terrified family members and tell them they were next. I am so glad that they are behind bars


  1. i didn't know that they had all been cuaght -i thought some were still free -i hope they get what they deserve!!!

  2. Where is the report on the Geo news site? Can you tell me the link please? Jazakallah.

  3. As-Salaamu 'alaikum,

    Alhamdu lillah, I hope they stay in jail for a long time insha Allah and your uncle and his family can get over this.

    By the way, your main index page has no entries. Just the heading and the two side bars but a big gap in the middle.

  4. Assalam-alaikam,

    LSS - yep, I'm telling you guys, you dont earwig enough.

    My dad saw it on the news channel, my Urdu reading is poor so I would not be able to find it on the site.

    Brother Yusuf,
    Ameen to your dua, I am too quick to feel sorry for people who have done something wrong, I am a sucker in this way - but not when you think of how many more people they would have gone on to harm.

    I noticed the missing text during the day - I don't have a clue what happened, but it's back now so hopefully it will just stay there.

  5. Salaam,

    Alhumdu lillah! I am so happy for you and your family that your uncle has been found! May Allah keep him safe.

    Out of curiosity did you get the money back that was handed over for ransom or will that be lost as "part of the investigation"?

  6. Assalam-alaikam Anonymous,
    Ameen to your dua's. We didn't get the money back although one of my uncle's is trying to arrange this. But to be honest, with the Pakistani police, who knows?

  7. I hope the money is recieved, but totally agree with how unpredictable the police are and what they might decide.

    To think a man of god (the Imam) would even consider to do something like this, just shows how far removed he was from the word of Allah. I hope he understands how much upset (understated word) he has caused to those they kidnapped and thier families. I hope your uncle is better now.