ISLAMABAD - The military’s spokesperson on Saturday rejected claims that Army Chief General Raheel Sharif’s son-in-law is among the seven crew members taken hostage by Taliban militants after a Punjab government’s helicopter crash-landed in Afghanistan, reported a private TV channel.

Terming such reports baseless, the ISPR issued a clarification with Lt Gen Asim Bajwa tweeting that "none of the hostages is related to COAS".

He said that rumours are being spread about the identity of various crew members of the helicopter. "The lives of all hostages are very precious and all-out efforts are being made for their safe and early return," Bajwa maintained.

A Punjab government Mi-17 helicopter had crash-landed on Thursday in Afghanistan’s Logar province where Taliban insurgents took the crew hostage before setting the helicopter on fire.

The helicopter had seven people on board at the time of the incident and was on its way for periodic overhauling to Uzbekistan.