A day after Italian Bosusco Paolo was released by Maoists after a 29-day captivity, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik flew down to Koraput district and met family members of the kidnapped legislator Jhina Hikaka.
On Friday, Mr. Patnaik apprised Mr. Hikaka's wife and mother of the steps his government was taking to facilitate the release of the 37-yer-old tribal MLA of the Biju Janata Dal. He reiterated his appeal to the Maoists to release at the earliest, Mr. Hikaka, who has been in the hands of the Andhra Odisha Border Special Zonal Committee of the CPI (Maoist) since March 24.
At Koraput, the Chief Minister attended a high-level meeting and reviewed the hostage crisis.
However, Mr. Hikaka's release is likely to be delayed further as the government has not taken any decision on the latest demand of his abductors — release of five more persons. “The government has not taken any decision yet on the demand,” Home Secretary U.N. Behera said.
On the release of the other people which the government had assured Maoists that it would facilitate, Mr. Behera said bail petitions should be moved on their behalf.
High-level meet at Koraput reviews hostage crisis
Government yet to take decision on demand for release 5 more persons