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Monday, Nov 18, 2019

Defence ministry dismisses jawan’s abduction report, says he’s safe

An army soldier was erroneously reported as having been abducted by militants from his home in Jammu and Kashmir’s Budgam district on Friday night and is safe, a statement released by the defence ministry on Saturday morning said.

india Updated: Mar 09, 2019 22:47 IST
Mir Ehsan
Mir Ehsan
Hindustan Times, Srinagar
Image for representation.
Image for representation. (AFP file photo)
         

An army soldier was erroneously reported as having been abducted by militants from his home in Jammu and Kashmir’s Budgam district on Friday night and is safe, a statement released by the defence ministry on Saturday morning said.

Relatives and neighbours of Yasin Bhat, who is posted with the Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry (JAKLI) regiment in Uttarakhand and came home on leave, informed the police and the army that some unknown gunmen had barged into their Qazipoora home around 8pm on Friday and forcibly taken him away.

A defence spokesperson tweeted on Saturday that reports of the abduction were incorrect. “Clarification. Media reports of the abduction of a serving Army soldier on leave from Qazipora, Chadoora, Budgam are incorrect. Individual is safe. Speculations may please be avoided,’’ he said.

Explaining to the media how the mix-up happened, Yasin’s relatives said the family was sitting together late in the evening when the gunmen entered their house from the rear looking for the soldier. A scuffle followed between the gunmen, Yasin’s mother and sisters and Yasin, and somehow in the melee, Yasin managed to flee. The relatives then raised an alarm, after which fellow villagers reported the matter to the police. But around midnight, Yasin, who had been hiding somewhere in the village, sneaked back home unharmed.

Inspector general of police S P Pani said the police were ascertaining details of the incident. On Friday, local police confirmed Yasin’s abduction.