All missing activists have reached their homes safely, Interior Ministry Chaudhry Nisar said Monday, a day after families of four of the five activists said they had left the country fearing for their lives.

The activists, most of them vocal of the religious intolerance in Pakistan, went missing from various cities in the first week of January. Their disappearance triggered nationwide protest.

Many termed the mysterious disappearances an attack on dissent in Pakistan. The far-right, however, slammed the activists as blasphemers; an offence that carries a mandatory death sentence in the country.

The interior minister had earlier rejected government’s involvement in the disappearance of the five activists.

“This government is not in the business of disappearing people and we will not tolerate such disappearances while we are in power,” Nisar had said.

Pakistan has had a history of enforced disappearances over the past decade, but this has mainly been confined to conflict zones near the Afghanistan border or to Balochistan where separatists are battling for independence.