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Names of three Indian nationals emerged on Monday in connection with the mysterious disappearance of Lt Col Habib Zahir, a former Pakistan Army officer who went missing in Nepal earlier this month, local media reported.

Three Indian nationals were found to be responsible for booking Zahir's air ticket, hotel accommodation and receiving the former officer at the airport, media reports said.

Safal Chaudhry, an Indian national, bought an air ticket for Zahir from Kathmandu. Similarly, an Indian woman Sabu Rajora, booked accommodation for Zahir in an upscale hotel in Kathmandu, sources said.

Rajora reportedly works as a marketing manager in Kathmandu.

The Foreign Office had earlier said that the role of foreign intelligence agencies cannot be ruled out in the disappearance of the retired Army officer.

Lt Col Zahir, who retired from the army in 2014, went missing on April 6 from Lumbini, a Buddhist pilgrimage site close to the Indian border, where he arrived after somebody by the name of Mark Thompson had contacted him via email and telephone for a job interview in Nepal.

It was reported that a probe by the officer’s family and friends showed that the UK telephone number from which he had received the call for the interview was computer generated, while the email domain and its associated website were registered in India. This prompted concerns that the Indian spy agency RAW could have been behind the kidnapping.

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