On the Maoists' demand to stop Operation Green Hunt in Orissa, the Naveen Patnaik government on Tuesday agreed that “there will be no coercive action by the security forces as long as Maoists do not indulge in any unlawful activity.”

This was announced by Home Secretary U.N. Behera at a joint press conference addressed by him and G. Hargopal, one of the three mediators. Apart from Professor Hargopal, the mediators were Someswar Rao and Dandapani Mohanty.

The Maoists had raised the demand for a complete halt on Operation Green Hunt after they abducted Malkangiri District Collector R. Vineel Krishna and Junior Engineer Pabitra Majhi last week.

Accepting several of the rebels' demands on Monday, the State government agreed to stop anti-Maoist operations in the State.

On the withdrawal of cases against tribals and workers of the Chasi Mulia Adivasi Sangha in the Koraput and Malkangiri districts, Mr. Behera said the State government had been taking suo motu action for withdrawal of cases against the tribals.

A total of 9,013 cases involving petty offences against the tribals had been dropped, he added.

“In keeping with this approach towards tribals and disadvantaged sections of society, the State government will, within a period of three months, review the cases against tribals held on charges of Maoist activities and land-related disputes in the Narayanpatna area of Koraput,” Mr. Behera said.

The process will begin within 15 days, and the names of Professor Radhamohan and Sudhakar Patnaik were suggested by the mediators to pursue the matter with the government.

Professor Hargopal expressed satisfaction with the outcome of the mediation.