TURA, July 20: A private taxi driver from the town of Dhubri in Assam, who was kidnapped about 6 days ago from between the Baromilev- Kherapara road in West Garo Hills, was released at about 6 am on Saturday morning. The driver Ansar Ali was kidnapped by a group of 4 men in camouflage, who stopped the car on their way to Dalu, about 50 kms from Tura.
Initial reports indicate that the kidnapping was a case of mistaken identity with the kidnappers suspecting wrongly that Ali was a coal businessman. Ali (35) was with his younger brother when he was stopped by 4 armed men in an Alto car on July 13 last. Ali had stopped as the four were dressed like policemen. However, once he stopped one of them pointed a gun at his head and covered his head before taking him into the nearby jungles. His brother was allowed to return with the car by the four abductors who were heavily armed.
A family member of the victim said, “He was left in the morning at about 6 am. A call was made to us to come and collect him and we were provided directions to his location. Unfortunately, as we are unaware of the Garo Hills region, we cannot confirm where exactly we picked him up from.”
“A demand of Rs 10 lakh was made to us immediately on the day he was kidnapped. We told them that we could not pay this and also that he was not a coal businessman but a mere taxi driver. As he would frequent the region with various people, they mistook him for someone else. Later, it seems they verified the story from their sources and let him go,” said another family member.
Meanwhile, the victim complained of severe beatings while in the captivity of the kidnappers. “It seems they beat him up to get him to confess that he was a coal businessman. He was beaten up every day while in captivity and his body is literally sore from the beatings he received,” said another family member.
The victim however could not confirm which group held him captive except for the fact that there were four of them and all of them were heavily armed.