KARACHI: Police found evidence that those kidnapped a 20-year-old law student in Defence Housing Authority (DHA) were also engaged in a shoot-out with police in Gulshan-i-Iqbal a day before her safe release, it emerged on Sunday.
They also suspected the involvement of some elements belonging to militant outfits in the kidnapping incident.
Dua Mangi was kidnapped by four armed men, who first shot her friend Haris Soomro and then escaped in a car in Khayaban-i-Bukhari, DHA, on Nov 30. The girl was freed and reached home safely on early Saturday morning.
The spent bullet casing found at the scene of Dua’s abduction was sent for a forensic analysis. It matched with the spent bullet casings found at the NIPA traffic intersection, where on Dec 3 an encounter took place between policemen and armed motorcyclists.
Investigators believe Dua Mangi and Bisma were abducted and freed by the same group
Narrating details of the encounter, Aziz Bhatti SHO Adeel Afzal told Dawn that on Thursday night four policemen were patrolling in Gulshan-i-Iqbal on two motorbikes when they signalled two masked men riding a motorbike at around 11:30pm. However, the suspects resorted to indiscriminate firing and the police returned fire.
The suspects managed to escape, but in the exchange of gunfire Constable Arsalan sustained five bullet wounds and was taken to a hospital, where his condition is said to be stable now.
The area SHO said that they suspected that one of the attackers was also wounded.
A police officer told Dawn that one spent bullet casing found at the crime scene in DHA on Nov 30 and five spent bullet casings of the Gulshan encounter were sent to the Forensic Science Laboratory.
An analysis at the lab confirmed that all the six bullets were fired from a same weapon, the source said, adding that investigators suspected that the criminals were possibly in the Gulshan neighbourhood to collect the ransom amount before freeing Dua.
He recalled that in a previous kidnapping incident, in which a girl named Bisma was abducted in a similar fashion from the same Defence neighbourhood in May, the kidnappers had collected the ransom money just about 200 metres away from the scene of Thursday’s encounter.
Security officials believed that a ‘professional criminal gang’ was involved in the kidnapping of Dua as well as Bisma.
Dua’s family not cooperating
Sources said that the statement of the kidnapped girl or her family could not be recorded on Sunday as reportedly the family was not cooperating or sharing any information with police.
However, columnist Aijaz Mangi, who is girl’s maternal uncle, told a section of media that Dua was not in a position to give any statement.
“When her condition improves, she will definitely give a statement to the police,” he said.
He claimed that the police had so far not contacted the family for recording the statement.
Recalling similarities between the Bisma and Dua kidnappings, the police officer opined that it was significant to note that the kidnappers did not mistreat Bisma and there were also reports that they did not mistreat Dua in their captivity.
The officer suggested that the manner with which the kidnappers executed their plan, abducted both the girls and then treated their captives suggested that they might belong to some militant outfits.
He said that the kidnappers had targeted both the girls apparently because of their appearance as they considered them as a “fashionable person who don’t follow Islamic traditions or conventions”.
The kidnappers appeared to be sophisticated who were familiar with the use of modern technology.
The officer hinted that the kidnappers might belong to one of the militant groups as they were experts of modern technology.
Published in Dawn, December 9th, 2019