The Embassy of Nepal in Thailand Dornath Aryal confirmed that all three students were freed safely and two of the nine kidnappers were arrested following the rescue operation carried out under the command of a Thai Police colonel. Seven kidnappers managed to flee and police are searching for them. Nepal’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said Thai Police, Nepali Embassy and a Nepal Police team deputed from the Central Investigation Bureau under the command of Superintendent of Police Pitambar Adhikari were involved in the rescue operation.
Nepali students had been missing since they went for an outing with a Pakistani national, M Ali, on Friday night. According to Aryal, Ali, a former student of the university and a friend of the Nepali students, took them along, saying he would throw a party, as he had obtained an “Australian visa”.
DIG Hemant Malla Thakuri, Director of CIB, told THT that the Pakistani national was involved in the abduction and had planned to extract a huge ransom from the students’ kin.
Sources said the kidnappers had demanded a ransom of Rs 1 crore for each of the kidnapped students from their families. Aryal said he was not aware if any ransom was paid by the victims’ families. Thakuri said no ransom was paid. The ransom calls were made in Hindi.
Role of M Ali, who has not been arrested, was being investigated.
One of the arrested persons is a Pakistani national, while another is a Thai national of Pakistani origin.
Karna’s father Prof Krishna Hachhethu said he was relieved to hear the news of his son and other students’ rescue. Karna even called his father to say he would be coming to Nepal soon.
Hachhethu told THT that rescued students were in Thai authorities’ custody for health check-up and to help interrogate the arrested kidnappers.
After getting information about the kidnapping from Thai authorities, Adhikari flew to Bangkok on Sunday. He played an active role in planning and carrying out the rescue operation.
Thai security agencies investigating into the case had told the Embassy not to disclose the details of the case, as it could endanger the lives of the kidnapped students.