Police released an official of the Pakistan High Commission in Dhaka keeping his colleague as guarantor, hours after his detention at Gulshan police station on Monday.The Pakistan High Commission issued a press statement stating that a team of four to five people in uniforms of the Detective Branch of police detained one of its employees at around 11:30am on Monday and threatened to kill him if he failed to provide them with Tk 5 crore.The Pakistani citizen is Abrar Ahmed Khan, an assistant press secretary in the press section of the Pakistan High Commission stationed in Dhaka.However, DMP deputy commissioner (public relations) Maruf Hossain Sardar told Prothom Alo Abrar Ahmed Khan was taken to Gulshan police station after police found his movements suspicious.Abrar was handed over to the second secretary of the Pakistan High Commission after he was identified as an employee of the commission, Maruf added.Maruf also said the staff was carrying 3,500 Indian rupees.
In a press release yesterday, the high commission said, “Abrar Ahmed Khan has been working as the assistant private secretary in the Press Section at the Pakistan High Commission, Dhaka since July 2011. This [Monday] morning, around 11:00am, four to five plainclothesmen forcefully picked him up from near his residence, close to Agora in Gulshan-2.“Four of these men were wearing jackets marked ‘DB’. Abrar was on foot at that time. These men picked up Abrar and bundled him in a silver coloured van. The security men then forcefully entered his apartment building and took his motorbike with them.Abrar was released this [Monday] evening at 6pm. On his return, he informed the High Commission that he was handcuffed and blindfolded and kept in a moving van for more than four hours before being brought to the Gulshan police station.The DB men constantly asked him to pay Taka 5 crore or else they would implicate him for possession of Indian fake currency. He was also threatened that he would be killed in ‘crossfire’ and ‘dumped’ in the river.When contacted, the Gulshan police station informed the High Commission that Abrar was being brought to the police station and as if, on cue, the media had already arrived there.The Pakistan High Commission strongly condemns this incident and rejects the false and fabricated charges leveled against its official. Unfortunately, the High Commission sees a disturbing pattern of harassment of its officers and officials, followed by a mud-slinging campaign and media trial.”When asked about the allegations raised by the Pakistan High Commission, DMP deputy commissioner Maruf said the allegations were entirely baseless and untrue.