KATHMANDU: Cases of kidnapping and extortion targeting Indian businessmen in this city and its neighbouring areas have registered a significant increase but most of them go unreported due to a sense of insecurity prevailing among the traders.
“The number of such cases has increased over the past four to five months, with 20-30 kidnapping incidents, mostly involving Indian businessmen, coming to our notice,” said Manoj Singhal, general secretary of the Indian Citizen’s Association of Nepal (ICAN).
With growing number of incidents and police and the administration expressing helplessness, Indian businessmen with interests in Nepal are getting anxious and jittery.
The latest case where a 22-year-old youth Uamesh Garg, the son of a transport operator from Haryana was kidnapped, led to a growing sense of fear and insecurity amongst the community. His subsequent release last week after three days in capitivity when his family paid a ransom has not really allayed fears. The young man was abducted from Teku, on the outskirts of Kathmandu, Nepal’s capital city.
Another Indian businessman, Pawan Pramod, was abducted from New Road in Kathmandu last month and released after a hefty ransom was paid. A similar case was reported from Baghbazaar two months ago.
“Police are unable to trace the culprits in these cases. There are big gangs involved in the kidnapping and they may have links with those across the border,” a businessman said on condition of anonymity.
What is making the process of investigations slow, is the non cooperation of traders, who out of fear are clamming up, lest they be unfairly targeted. Most of them are not registering a complaint or informing the police about any suspicious happenings.