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Kidnapped Indian NGO worker traced, 12 arrested in Afghanistan

Kidnapped Indian NGO worker traced, 12 arrested in Afghanistan

Alexis-Prem-KumarIndian aid worker Father Alexis Prem Kumar Antonysamy, who was recently kidnapped in Afghanistan by some unidentified militants, has been located to the Gulran district of Herat province in Afghanistan.

Meanwhile, the Afghan officials have arrested at least 12 twelve in connection with his kidnapping. Though, the Afghan officials have not confirmed the location where Prem kumar is being kept in captivity due to security reasons, sources said that he is probably in the Gulran district.

The Afghan authorities are also conducting air searches to trace his exact location and raiding other areas to nab other suspects involved in the case.

Reports also claimed that Prem Kumar’s abductors tried to shift him to other locations in view of the action taken by the Afghan officials.

Prem Kumar’s kidnappers have made no ransom demand so far.

The Afghan officials yesterday arrested one person believed to be involved in his kidnapping and efforts are on to nab others.

Forty seven-year old Kumar, country director of Jesuit Refugee Service, was kidnapped on Monday by unidentified armed men when he was on a visit to a Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS)-supported school for Afghan refugee children from Iran and Pakistan.

The JRS has since suspended its operations in Afghanistan.

Kumar hailed from Devakottai in the Sivaganga district of Tamil Nadu, and has been in Afghanistan since 2011.

Quoting Afghan police, government sources said “six gunmen” had abducted Kumar and may have taken him to Gulran district.

Since there is no concrete hostage policy in Afghanistan, the officials there are working with “district elders” to secure Kumar’s release. The Indian Consulate is also closely monitoring the situation and coordinating with the Afghan officials.

Meanwhile, the brother of Prem Kumar made an emotional appeal to Afghan officials and the Government of India to secure his brother’s release.

At the local church, priests and friends prayed for his safety and quick release.

Well-wishers and family members consoled his 77-year-old father – a retired school teacher, his sobbing sister and his brother Manoharan.

Folding his hands, in his appeal Prem Kumar’s brother Manoharan said, “I appeal to all in Afghanistan with folded hands, whoever it may be, to release my brother Fr Alexis Prem Kumar as early as possible so that the agony what we are going through may end.”

With tears in her eyes, his sister said, “I want my brother, he’s everything for me.”