Islamabad: Abductions for ransom have become a lucrative business in Pakistan, said a leading daily Monday and observed that the nexus between terrorists and traditional kidnappers is something the state has to fight.
Interior Minister Rehman Malik had told the National Assembly that 15,365 incidents of kidnappings took place in the country last year.
Of them, 13,497 took place in Punjab, 1,293 in Sindh, 273 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 250 in Balochistan and 52 in Islamabad.
An editorial in the Daily Times Monday said: "Children too are victims of such abductions and are in some cases used by the terrorists as suicide bombers. This is a very worrying development."
It added that a Swiss couple was recently kidnapped in Balochistan and the authorities are still clueless about their whereabouts.
"In traditional tribal society, kidnapping for ransom is not looked down upon as it is thought of as a means to survival."
Noting that most of these abductions for ransom are done by the Taliban and jihadis to fund their terrorist activities, it said: "Kidnapping for ransom has now become a lucrative business. The nexus between the terrorists and traditional kidnappers is something the state has to fight. To do this, the military establishment must first abandon its policy of duality and take out all the terrorists."