Five days after the body of kidnapped Food Corporation of India (FCI) executive director PC Ram was identified by his son in Assam, his family on Friday claimed he was still alive.
Ram's 25-year-old son Praveen, based in Ghaziabad near New Delhi, told journalists that the family had received a phone call from their father two days ago. Ram is said to be in the custody of the outlawed United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) who kidnapped him from Guwahati April 17.
"The family says they have credible information that Ram is alive following a telephone conversation with him. We are a little confused now as his son identified the body recovered Sunday from Baska district in Assam," a senior police official in Guwahati said.
On Sunday, police recovered a mutilated body from Anandpur village in Baska district of western Assam.
Praveen arrived in Baska from Ghaziabad Monday and identified the body. The body was flown to Ghaziabad with the government according due state honours and paying floral tributes at the airport.
The last rites were performed in Ghaziabad by Ram's family.
According to sources, ULFA leaders also telephoned some of Ram's family members claiming he was alive and that they want two of their jailed leaders to be released in exchange for the safe return of the FCI official.
Police said the ULFA had earlier demanded Rs.20 million as ransom for the release of Ram.