The Opposition parties in the Lok Sabha on Thursday accused the government of being insensitive to the abduction of two Italians by Maoists in Odisha and demanded a statement in the House on what it was doing to get them released.

The matter was raised during zero hour by Biju Janata Dal's B. Mahatab. Soon he was supported by the BJP and other parties and they maintained that the government should intervene. They took exception to its alleged silence on the issue.

“Serious issue”

BJP's L.K. Advani said the abduction of Palo Bosusco and Claudio Colangelo was a serious issue as there was no information about their whereabouts. He regretted the lack of communication between the State government and the Centre. He demanded that either Home Minister P. Chidambaram or External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna inform the House of the prevailing situation latest by Monday.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pawan Bansal assured the members he would convey their feelings to the Ministers.

Mr. Mahatab accused Mr. Chidambaram of being “casual” to the abduction — not responding properly to phone calls from Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. He expressed the hope that the Centre would respond in a more rational manner as the matter involved foreign nationals and had attracted the attracted the Italian. He noted that officials of the Italian Embassy were camping in the State. He maintained that the two foreigners ventured into the Kandhamal districtignoring the warnings issued by the police.

Congress' Jagdambika Pal countered, saying the State government was responsible for the Italians release as law and order was a State subject.