Budapest, Hungary – Raza Khan, a Pakistani CEU student, who has been missing in Budapest since March, has been confirmed dead in an email sent by the university to the student community.
“I have to inform you that Raza Khan, our friend and student, who has been missing since March 2, has been found dead”, reads the email signed by CEU Rector and President Michael Ignatieff. “His family has returned his body to Pakistan for burial.” The circumstances surrounding his death remain “unknown” according to the email.
Raza Khan, who was last seen in the 5th district as he was leaving his flat on March 2, was due to graduate within just a few months’ time.
He was “was much loved, and we are devasted at the news of his death,” adds Raza’s head of department Tim Crane. “We would like to thank his friends and fellow students, alums, faculty and staff who helped in the search for Raza, and who gave assistance to his parents and uncle when they came to look for their son and nephew in the aftermath of his disappearance.” budapest student dead
Fellow students shared his picture and made posters in order to help the police’s search. In one of the circulated pictures, Raza Khan is holding a banner that he made while working at the Ewing English Society in Lahore, Pakistan, which reads, ‘Books are the treasured wealth of the world and the fit inheritance of generations and nations”, a quote by David Henry Thoreau.
The confirmation of the philosophy student’s tragic passing will hopefully help fellow students and those who knew him find closure in these trying times.
But the sudden email, its lack of clarity and the little information disclosed in it have also disturbed many who still feel they need answers to move passed this tragedy which has shocked the Hungarian capital’s important student community and been the source of many rumours, conspiracy theories and fake news.
Back in March, the government-related, right-wing online news platform Pesti Srácok notably spread fake news claiming that Raza Khan could be a potential “carrier of the coronavirus”, and has gone missing in order to avoid being put in quarantine.
CEU has released a statement denouncing the article in question, stating that “CEU has seen no evidence whatsoever that Raza has been infected with the virus and urges the media not to give publicity to unsubstantiated rumors”. The Student Union also demanded that the relevant authorities take action by ordering the story to be taken down and holding the individuals behind the websites accountable.