Souvik Pal's family seeks PM's intervention in intensifying search



Bangalore: The family of the 19-year-old Indian student, missing since New Year eve from Manchester in the United Kingdom, on Friday sought Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's intervention for intensifying the search process.

Mahuya Pal, mother of the missing Souvik Pal, today wrote a letter to Singh appealing him to direct the External Affairs ministry and their British counterparts to trace her son at the earliest.

The family, hailing from Kolkata and living here, had written to External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee seeking their help.

Both have not replied yet but the family has spoken to Kolkata(South) MP Subrata Bakshi who explained about the procedures involved in seeking help from the British government to locate Souvik.

Mahuya in her letter mentioned that her husband Santanu Pal had reached Manchester on January 6 and is interacting with local authorities, university officials and friends, but till date no one there could give any information of her son.

She said it has been ten days since her son has gone missing and the family has been receiving feedback from Manchester Police about their search operation in a nearby canal and CCTV tracking, but have not received any new information since January 5.

"We have received last search update from Manchester police on January 5 when they were searching the nearby canal and tracking CCTV footage. After that, we have not received any updated feedback on the actions taken by them," she said.

Mahuya said Manchester Police Department called the family on January 2 and informed about Souvik’s disappearance. He was attending a New Year’s Eve celebration with five hostel mates on December 31 midnight. Since then, his mobile phone is switched off," she said.

Meanwhile, Pal's family friend Anupam Das said the family has received a reply from Karnataka Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar's office acknowledging the letter faxed to him by Mahuya.

Das said the Chief Minister's Office said the letter has been forwarded to the State Home Ministry to look into the matter. "We really appreciate the response of the Chief Minister. Hope things will expedite from now on," he said.

PTI