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The News International, Sunday, March 03, 2002

Pak HC staffers missing in Delhi

Pakistan protests over 'abduction, torture'

NEW DELHI: A violent mob attacked the staff car of the Pakistan High Commission here on Saturday evening. Subsequently, the car, the driver and a staff member are missing.

The car, bearing a diplomatic licence plate, was attacked around 3:00 pm local time (0930 GMT), a source at the Pakistan High Commission said. "He called the high commission and tried to seek help. His last words were: 'Our car has been attacked and the windows broken.' Suddenly his voice disappeared," the source said.

The Pakistan High Commission said that it had strongly taken up the matter with the Indian government. The High Commission established contact with the New Delhi police authorities, calling upon them to trace out the missing car and its occupants.

However, the Indian foreign ministry said that two employees had been caught spying. An Indian foreign office source said: "The staffer and his aide were caught red-handed, accepting secret documents from an Indian contact. The Indian contact was arrested, while the two Pakistani nationals were returned to the Pakistan High Commission in Delhi after which they spun a story about being attacked by an angry mob."

The Indian foreign ministry spokesman said that the men would probably be asked to leave India. He declined to say what kind of documents were involved. Pakistan's Deputy High Commissioner Jalil Abbas Jeelani called the Indian foreign ministry's statement a fabrication to cover up the "ill-treatment" of the two men by Indian authorities.

In Islamabad, the Pakistan Foreign Office contacted the acting high commissioner of India and brought the matter to his attention as well, emphasising the need to trace out the Pakistani High Commission staff members and the official car missing as a result of the violent mob attack.

In a statement, the Foreign Office spokesman said that Pakistan protested to India over "the abduction, illegal detention and torture" of two officials from its high commission in New Delhi by Indian security personnel.

The spokesman said that Gul Zarin and Sultan Mehmood were attacked and dragged from their car by Indian intelligence officers on Saturday afternoon. They were allegedly detained for more than four hours and "subjected to severe beating while being accused of pick-pocketing," he said. The beating "resulted in visible injuries on their bodies," he added.

"The Government of Pakistan has lodged a strong protest with the Government of India over the reprehensible, provocative and cowardly action by Indian intelligence operatives," he said.

 

The Nation, Sunday, March 03, 2002

Pak HC staffers abducted, tortured

From Our Correspondent

ISLAMABAD - Two employees at Pakistan’s High Commission in New Delhi were tortured and abducted after their car was attacked by the agents of Indian intelligence on Saturday evening.

According to a Foreign Office spokesman, “the Indian Intelligence operatives attacked the Pakistan High Commission car in which the two officials were proceeding to New Delhi railway station.” The spokesman said the officials-Gul Zarin and Sultan Mehmood-were dragged from the car and subjected to severe beating while being accused of pick-pocketing. “The car was also badly damaged."

He said the officials were kept in illegal detention, severely beaten and tortured resulting in visible injuries on their bodies.

“The right eye of Sultan Mehmood was also injured. The officials were released after more than four hours of illegal detention,” the spokesman said.

Islamabad, meanwhile, strongly condemned the abduction, illegal detention and torture two officials of Pakistan’s High Commission in New Delhi by India intelligence operatives.

The Foreign Office spokesman said the government of Pakistan had lodged a strong protest with the government of India over the reprehensible, provocative and cowardly action by India Intelligence Operatives.

“The government of Pakistan also reminds the government of India its obligation under the Vienna Convention of 1961 on diplomatic relations as well as the Bilateral Code of Conduct signed between the two countries in August 1992,” the spokesman said.

The Foreign Office also contacted the Indian Acting High Commissioner, and brought the matter to his attention.

Agencies add from New Delhi: Soon after the abduction of two official, Pakistan high Commission established contact with the New Delhi Police authorities calling upon them to trace out the missing staffers.

An Indian Foreign Ministry official later claimed two employees at Pakistan’s high commission in New Delhi had been caught spying.

‘The staffer and his aid were caught red-handed accepting secret documents from an Indian contact,’ alleged the Indian Foreign Office source.

‘The Indian contact was arrested while the two Pakistani nationals were returned to the High Commission in Delhi after which they spun a story about being attacked by a angry mob.

‘That is a completely baseless and malicious story,’ was the Indian Foreign Office response.

Our Monitoring Desk adds: While talking to Pakistan Television (PTV) on telephone on Saturday, Consular at Pakistan High Commission in New Delhi Ibne Abbas gave details of the incident in which two staff members of the Commission were tortured by Indian intelligence officials.

According to him, the two staff members went to railway station in the official car of the High Commission to buy tickets. “On their way back vehicles and members of Indian intelligence agencies surrounded their car and asked them to get out of the car,” he added.

The Pak High Commission officials refused to get out of the car, upon which the Indian agents tortured them after breaking the windscreen and door of the car.

He said “Then the Indians took them to some unknown place and after about four hours the local police handed them over to us at about 7.15 pm local time.

One of our staff members was rushed to hospital for medical check-up because he had severe injuries on his head.”

 

The News International, March 14, 2002

Expelled Pak HC officials arrive

ISLAMABAD: The two officials of the Pakistan High Commission in India, who were expelled over the allegations of spying, arrived here early on Wednesday morning.

Gul Zarin and Sultan Mehmood were asked on March 5 to leave the country within one week. The two officials were abducted on March 2 and were illegally detained and tortured by Indian Intelligence operatives before being released.

Pakistan had already rejected the Indian allegations as a fabrication to cover up illegal detention and inhuman treatment of the officials by the intelligence agencies. Talking to reporters after arrival from New Delhi via Dubai, Gul Zarin said that in the afternoon of March 2, they went to New Delhi Railway stations to purchase tickets. "When we were returning, our car was blocked by some eight to 10 vehicles and they (agencies' personnel) started smashing windows and car doors." Zarin said after smashing the front screen of their car, "they dragged us out and subjected to severe beating." "They took us with them and we were severely beaten for about four to five hours before being released," he added. Zarin said, then, intelligence officials handed them over to police from where they were asked to leave.

 

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