ISLAMABAD: Police have released a teenage boy and discharged him from the kidnapping case of a girl.

Besides, a cancellation report is being prepared to quash the case under which he had been arrested, said the police.

The boy was discharged from the case after establishing the fact that both of them had left their houses on their own free will, the police said, adding there was no evidence of forced disappearance.

The girl in her statement recorded before a magistrate also said she had left her house on her will and was not kidnapped.

On Sept 15, the girl disappeared from her house located at G-8/1. Later, the Karachi Company police registered a kidnapping case against unidentified persons.

On Sept 17, the girl was traced to a hotel in Swat where she was found along with a boy of her age. An amount of Rs1.2 million was recovered from them and later they were brought to the capital.

The physical remand of the boy was taken from the court of a magistrate. Besides, his parents, residents of Scheme III Rawalpindi, were called for questioning during which they told the police that the amount recovered from the boy had been stolen from the house.

When the parents, including the boy’s father, a lower division clerk in a government institution, were asked if they had reported the disappearance of their son to the police or conducted a search for him, their reply was unsatisfactory. They just said they were worried about him.

The police said the boy was allowed to go home while on the basis of the statement of the girl a report was also being prepared to quash the case.

The cancellation report will be submitted to the court seeking directives to quash/cancel the FIR.

“Although no undertaking/assurance in writing was taken from both the parents, officers who questioned them are satisfied about the safety of the girl and the boy,” said the police.

When contacted, the girl’s father told Dawn that his daughter and the boy had become friends on social media three years ago.

“When I scolded her over the matter, she told her social media friends that she was contemplating to commit suicide.” He said when he again taunted her, she also shared it with her friends on the social media.

He said the boy had left his house three days before his daughter disappeared and when she shared his grievances on the social media, he (boy) told her that he had already left his house and asked her to join him.

Now she is happy and stable and the family is providing her comfort, he said.

“I believe she left the house due to a communication gap with us,” he said. There is a need to give children liberty and confidence but most of the parents like me failed to do so, he added.

Besides, most of the parents are reluctant to adopt modern technology even though children need them, he added.

There is also a need to establish an emergency and response unit to deal with issues related to teenagers and minors, he said.

Published in Dawn, September 22nd, 2019