Cops probe 'Qadri Lovers' angle in Taseer abduction

Slain guvs son was kidnapped by armed men on Friday

Shahbaz Taseer, 27, was kidnapped on Friday by four armed men near his office in the Gulberg area.

Assistant Superintendent of Police Fazal Hamid, who is part of the investigation team, said on Saturday that they had been working on different leads, including that of the involvement of the ‘Mumtaz Qadri Lovers’ group as also a property dispute angle.

The Taseer family had been receiving threats since the killing of the former governor in January this year at the hands of his own security guard, Mumtaz Qadri, of the Elite Force who was opposed to Taseer’s opinion that the country’s blasphemy laws needed to be amended.

Confessing to his crime, Qadri had said he had killed Taseer for “committing blasphemy”. The anti-terrorism court hearing the case, adjourned the proceedings on Saturday till September 10.

Taseer had requested President Asif Ali Zardari to suspend the death sentence of a Christian woman, Asia Bibi, in a blasphemy case.

Religious extremist groups, who said Qadri had done a “commendable job to kill a blasphemer,” had warned the court and the government against convicting him.
Punjab Governor Sardar Latif Khosa has accused Shahbaz Sharif’s Punjab government of “having indirect link with the kidnapping of Taseer junior”.  A ‘Qadri’s Lovers Group’ has been active in holding demonstrations and issuing warnings to the government.

ASP Hamid said police had taken the finger print record on the car of Taseer and sent it to the National Database Registration Authority for identification of the kidnappers. “We have also got the telephone record of Shahbaz,” he said.

Meanwhile, Punjab Governor Khosa accused the Punjab government of being indirectly responsible for Taseer’s kidnapping.Referring to the Sharifs he said: “Earlier they had killed Salman Taseer and now they have kidnapped his son”.

The governor said he would ask the PPP co-chairman Zardari to review its reconciliation policy with the PML-N as the PPP could not tolerate “more accesses of the PML-N government”.

Shahbaz Taseer’s aunt Aysha Haq has got a kidnap case registered against unidentified people. Shahbaz’s younger brother Shaheyar is the complainant of the case. Shahbaz was looking after the business affairs of the family.

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