Two missing Indian clerics traced in Pakistan, to return tomorrow

Pak claims they were in area with poor communication network, not missing

Head cleric Syed Asif Nizami (left) of Delhi's Hazrat Nizamuddin Dargah, and his nephew were last seen at a shrine in Lahore. File pic
Head cleric Syed Asif Nizami (left) of Delhi's Hazrat Nizamuddin Dargah, and his nephew were last seen at a shrine in Lahore. File pic

New Delhi/Karachi: The two missing Indian clerics of Delhi's Hazrat Nizamuddin Dargah have been traced, Pakistan conveyed to India yesterday.

"Pakistan Foreign Office has confirmed that the two Indian clerics have been traced and reached Karachi," a source said in New Delhi.

The confirmation came after External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj spoke to Pakistan PM's adviser on foreign affairs Sartaj Aziz, regarding the case. The clerics — Syed Asif Nizami, the head priest (Sajjadanashin) of Hazrat Nizamuddin Aulia Dargah, and and his nephew Nazim Nizami —went missing a few days after they arrived in Pakistan.

According to Pakistani media reports, both clerics had been in "interior Sindh where there was no communication network" and that is why they could not tell their relatives about their whereabouts. They will leave for India on March 20.

Earlier in the day, Pakistani sources had said the two clerics were in the custody of Pakistan's intelligence agency over their alleged links with the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM).

They were offloaded from Karachi-bound Shaheen Airlines on March 14 at the Allama Iqbal International Airport, Lahore, the sources had said.

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