Islamabad: Three Hindu traders have been abducted by unidentified armed men in the restive Balochistan province of southwest Pakistan, the latest in a series of crimes targeting the minority community.
The traders -- Denesh Kumar, Retesh Kumar and Ratan Kumar -- were kidnapped at a spot about 140 km from provincial capital Quetta on Friday night.
The incident triggered protests against the government's continued inability to provide any sort of safety to residents of the province, The Express Tribune reported today. A protest by a representative body of Hindus was widely supported by political parties and business associations.
The kidnapped men belong to the same family. The traders were abducted while they were on their way back home from a family function. Their van was intercepted by unidentified men at Jiwa intersection of the RCD Highway in Kalat district.
The men took the traders hostage at gunpoint, Balochistan Levies official Abdul Rahim said. "The kidnappers came in two black four-wheel-drive vehicles and a white sedan," he said. Though no one has approached the relatives of the abducted men, it is believed they were being held for ransom.
"It could be a case of kidnapping for ransom," Rahim said. Mukesh Kumar, the brother of Ratan Kumar, is convinced they were kidnapped for ransom. He said the Hindu community is an easy target for criminals. He added that "no one had called to make any demands yet."


Latest News from World News desk