Sahil’s been found and I think parents everywhere can sigh with relief in sympathy. The child was abandoned in a village 20 kilometres from where he was kidnapped from his home nearly two weeks ago.
We won’t probably ever know what the five year old went through in the twelve days of his disappearance, and one of my chief frustrations with mainstream media is that this is just the kind of thing that people want to know about and just the kind of thing they never get to know.
In my combing of the papers for this story, I’ve just come across the same quotes bearing the same message: the family is incredibly relieved and elated and grateful for co-operation from the Pakistani and British authorities. All well and good. But don’t you want more from this story?
There are things we will never really get cleared about this story. I can understand that everyone wants to keep quiet about the details of the ransom; authorities always insist they have a no-pay policy for ransoms, and it’s pretty definite that they almost always pay it behind the scenes - all for understandable reasons. But in this case there are hints that there were international links to the whole affair, the money was paid in “another country”, hints that the kidnappers weren’t all Pakistani. That part of the story will always remain hazy. And I doubt we’ll ever get a satisfactory picture of what the child remembers about his captors and how they treated him, who the “inside man” was for this job, why Sahil and his family was picked out when there are so many wealthier foreign based Pakistanis home on holiday visits.
I suspect there are twists and turns to this story that won’t ever make the light of day, but for the moment, we can all be happy that at least this one news story has a rare happy ending.