PESHAWAR - Militants have abducted up to 60 students of Cadet College Razmak, North Waziristan Agency, in the Frontier Region (FR) Bannu, witnesses said Monday. However, some other reports put the strength of the abductees at about 500. According to the witnesses, the abducted students along with teachers and other staffers were coming to Bannu after the college administration ordered the closure of the institution in the wake of terrorist threats. Soon after the closure, the students belonging to other parts of the country boarding vehicles left for Bannu. However, a number of vehicles were disappeared near Kajhoori Check Post within FR Bannu. PPP leader and Advisor to Prime Minister on Tribal Affairs Mirza Muhammad Jihadi while confirming the abduction of students said, They boarded 34 mini buses for Bannu but didnt arrive there. He said only 17 students boarding a vehicle reached Meeryan Police Station, whereas according to him 500 students are missing, probably abducted by Taliban militants. But on the other hand, the local officers believe that strength of abducted students is from 40 to 60 boarding on four vehicles. District Police Officer Bannu Iqbal has also confirmed the incident but he was unable to say anything about the strength of the students. Agencies add: As confusion over exact number of kidnapped students mounts, different news agencies and sources are presenting widely varying figures. According to the agencies quoting different sources, suspected militants armed with rockets, grenades and automatic weapons abducted some 400 students, staff and relatives driving away from a boys school in a troubled tribal region in northwest Pakistan on Monday. A police official Meer Sardar said the abduction occurred about 20 miles (30 kilometres) from Razmak Cadet College in North Waziristan. The people were leaving the school area after they were warned to get out in a phone call from a man they believed to be a political official, Sardar said, citing accounts from a group of 17 who managed to get away. Local media, however, reported that the group was leaving because their vacation had started. Around 30 buses, cars and other vehicles were carrying the students, staff and others when they were stopped along the road by a large group of alleged militants in their own vehicles. He requested anonymity out of fear of Taliban reprisal but said the schools principal was among those abducted. His vehicle happened to be behind a truck on the road, and it was less visible, so the driver slipped away. It was unclear how many students were involved, though they made up the majority of the group. According to another news agency, police were negotiating with the Taliban via tribal elders to release of the captives taken in North Waziristan, said Mirza Mohammad Jihadi, an adviser to the prime minister. Around 30 buses, cars and other vehicles were carrying the students, staff and others when they were stopped along the road by a large group of alleged militants in their own vehicles, according to a staff member at the school who was among those who escaped. The vehicle he was travelling in happened to be behind a truck on the road, and it was less visible, so the driver slipped away. He requested anonymity out of fear of Taliban reprisal but said the schools principal was among those abducted. Late Monday, reports were coming in that at least one other bus managed to get away and reach a police station. Jihadi said at least 29 students escaped, apparently in addition to the 17 that managed to reach a police station in the Marian area. Meanwhile, talking to a news agency army spokesman Maj Gen Athar Abbas said, This is all to divert attention.