Kidnapped Indian aid worker freed

Kidnapped Indian aid worker freed

Kidnapped Indian aid worker freed

Indian aid worker Judith D’Souza, abducted in Afghanistan on June 9, returned home on Saturday after her release from captivity.

Judith was held captive by a criminal gang in the Shomali Plains north of Kabul. The Embassy of India in Kabul played a key role in securing her release.

“Thank you Afghanistan - for all your help and support in rescuing #Judith,” External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj tweeted on Saturday after New Delhi’s envoy to Kabul, Manpreet Vohra, conveyed to her that Judith had been released.

“Ambassador @VohraManpreet - you have done an outstanding job,” she added in another tweet. Sushma has been overseeing the efforts by the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) to secure Judith’s release. Vohra accompanied Judith to New Delhi on Saturday evening. Judith first met Sushma at her residence, who then took her to 7, Race Course Road, to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“Judith has been rescued by the Government. Our family’s joy knows no bounds. Gratitude to @PMOIndia @SushmaSwaraj @VohraManpreet,” Judith’s brother Jerome D’Souza tweeted.A resident of Kolkata, Judith has been working for the Aga Khan Foundation as a senior technical advisor at their office in Kabul. She was about to complete her assignment in Afghanistan and return to India when some criminals kidnapped her from Qala-e-Fatullah area of Kabul. She was travelling in a car and was accompanied by a security guard, apart from the driver. Some armed men in another vehicle waylaid Judith’s car and abducted her after enquiring if she was an Afghan or a foreigner. 

They, however, did not kidnap the driver and the security guard, sources said in New Delhi According to reports, the Afghan National Police ruled out the role of Taliban or any other terrorist organisation soon after questioning the driver and the security guard, who provided them information corroborating the suspicion that the abduction was carried out by a criminal gang with the objective of squeezing out a hefty ransom.

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