A taxi driver’s journey to hell

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The family of a taxi driver Muhammad Farooq, who was kidnapped and sold to a man along with his cab in FATA for Rs 700,000, appealed to the Punjab chief minister for his recovery. Malik Mukhtar, father of Farooq, of Narang Mandi, told APP on Sunday that accused Yasin had hired his son’s cab on December 5, 2006 and he had returned today. He said that no MNA or MPA tried to help him as he was a poor man. Mukhtar said, “Initially, the police refused to register a case, but later registered an FIR No 627/06 on December 27, 2006, after hectic efforts by the family. However, they failed to recover my son.” He said that the family, who are all labourers, had continued their search for accused Yasin, a proclaimed offender, and Farooq using their meagre resources. “Our hope rekindled two months ago when we received information that accused Yasin was arrested while attempting to sell another stolen taxi in the Kassowal area,” he added. The poor family managed to bring the accused to Narang Mandi police station for investigation, where “Yasin confessed that he had abducted Farooq and told the police he had sold him and his taxi for Rs 700,000 to Iqbal Khan in FATA,” said Mukhtar, “On the instructions of the police, Yasin telephoned Iqbal Khan in FATA, telling him that he wanted to sell another driver and a taxi and invited him to a hotel in Mianwali. Iqbal reached the spot with an accomplice Ibrahim but fled when the police raided the hotel. The police arrested Ibrahim but released him later without an explanation.” “Farooq’s mother died of grief last year,” said the sorrowful father as he appealed to the chief minister to help him so he could find out the fate of his son before his death. When contacted, investigation officer Rana Akram acknowledged the details of the case and said that he had raided areas in Mianwali and Mardan to arrest Iqbal. He, however, did not rule out the murder of the taxi driver. He said he could not work for long on the case as he had a busy schedule.

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