­LAHORE - Renowned journalist and rights activist Gul Bokhari reached home safely, hours after she was abducted by unidentified gunmen from a highly-guarded locality in Lahore late Tuesday night.

Gul in a statement thanked her friends and colleagues for their support during the ordeal.

"I would like to express my deep gratitude and love to my friends, family, colleagues & supporters in civil society, journalism and politics across the board, for coming together in solidarity in concern for my well being last night," read the statement.

"I am well, and would request privacy at this stage.

Gul was riding in a vehicle of Waqt News along with a driver to participate in a TV talk show “2 V 2” late Tuesday night when she was abducted by masked men, some of them in uniform, on a busy road in the cantonment area of Lahore.

Hours later she was released. According to her family, Gul reached home safely in the wee hours of Wednesday.

It was not clear yet who abducted the outspoken journalist and no FIR had been registered, though police said it was investigating the incident.

Condemnations started pouring in as Gul’s abduction became top trend on the social networking sites.

The British High Commission in Islamabad said Wednesday that it was aware of the reported incident and "reaching out with consular assistance".

"We are very concerned at reports of Gul Bukhari's abduction last night," the High Commission said in a statement posted on Twitter.

Reportedly, the standing committee of the Senate on Human Rights has also taken notice of the abduction of Gul as well as assault on anchorperson Asad Kharal – who was attacked by unknown men as he left the Lahore airport late Tuesday. Kharal was shifted to Services Hospital with multiple injuries on his head and neck.

Punjab Police Inspector General Arif Nawaz Khan has been directed by the committee to send back a detailed report of both the incidents within 24 hours. The committee will take up the abduction and assault issue in the next meeting to be held in Quetta on June 11.

When contacted, a police official said they were investigating both the incidents. No case had been registered with the local police so far, said the official who spoke to The Nation on the condition of anonymity.