Early Morning of September 29, at about 3 a.m., Abid Abdullah, Director Coordination of the Jang Group, was seized and taken away by unidentified armed men from the Industrial Estate area near Hayatabad in the wee hours of Wednesday. Senior Pakistani journalists have also said that the abductors also threatened to do the same with Hamid Mir, Shah Zeb Khanzada and Najam Sethi, senior and independent journalists of Pakistan.
Sabrangindia appeals to journalists from all over South Asia to issue strong statements in solidarity with the abducted journalist and with compatriots in Pakistan who work independently, at great physical peril.
Reportedly, Abid Abdullah, along with his driver Zafar Hussain, left the Jang printing press in the Industrial Estate area at around 3:15am when armed men intercepted their car near the Umar Glass Factory. He had arrived only a day ago from Lahore in connection with office duties and was staying at the lone five-star hotel in the city.
“We were on our way back to the hotel after finishing work in the printing press when six to eight armed men seated in two vehicles intercepted us near the Umar Glass Factory. Three of them boarded our car, telling us that they know Abid Abdullah well,” the driver told the police in his written application in Urdu.
“The armed men told us they are going with us to the hotel to have a cup of tea,” Zafar Hussain recalled. “They became angry when Abid Abdullah told them he was ready to pay them any amount of money as if they were kidnapping him for ransom. They told him that they don’t work for money and soon more people of his (Jang) Group will be their guests,” the driver said in his complaint to the police.He added that when they reached near the hotel via the University Road, the armed men told him to drive straight towards the GT Road.
Zafar Hussain, who belongs to Lahore, said near the Government Higher Secondary School Number 1, the armed men ordered him to park the car and stay inside with head down for half an hour. “I was warned that their men would fire at me if I looked ahead, behind or around. Meanwhile, they took Abid Abdullah away and drove towards an unknown direction. They also took away my and Abid Abdullah’s mobile phones,” he recalled.
He said he waited in the car for about 15 minutes and was in fear. Later, he said he drove the car to the Hayatabad industrial estate again to reach the Jang printing press.Senior police officials said they are investigating the case.
Inspector General of Police, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Nasir Khan Durrani, told The News (Pakistan) that all his officers were on the job and other law-enforcement agencies had also been informed and were working on the case to locate and recover Abid Abdullah.