Maoists toughen stand on Hikaka release

Bhubaneswar: The Andhra-Odisha-Border Special Zonal Committee(AOBSZC) of the CPI(Maoist) today strongly refuted to release kidnapped MLA Jhina Hikaka as long as the government did not free the prisoners demanded by outfit. AOBSZC leader Jagabandhu in a letter written in Telugu language warned that the peoples` court (praja court) would be compelled to take the ultimate decision regarding the future of the tribal legislator if the state government tried to indulge in any kind of conspiracy against the Maoists.

Issuing an ultimatum for the government the Maoist leader stated in the letter that the ultras would release the Laxmupir MLA only when the government released the 30 persons, Maoists and members of the Chasi Mulia Adivasi Sangh(CMAS), demanded by the rebels. The letter categorically stated that there was no question of freeing the abducted MLA Jhina Hikaka as long as the government did not release innocent tribals and Maoist leader Ghasi whom the police has incarcerated labeling him allegedly as a Most Wanted man.

The Maoist leader has once again ruled out to name mediators for negotiations with the government to secure the release of the MLA. Warning against any move by the security personnel Jagabandhu stated that the government would be responsible for any kind of repercussions. He cautioned the government that the `praja court` would take the ultimate decision about the future of the MLA in case the government conspired against the rebels.

The government had earlier announced to facilitate the release of 23 prisoners, 8 Maoists and 15 members of the CMAS, to secure the release of the BJD MLA. Later the AOBSZC demanded the release of five more prisoners including top Maoist leader Chhenda Bhushanam alias Ghasi, CMAS advisor Gananath Patra, Suna Pangi, Singa Nachika and Walisi Wadeka.

The Maoist leader Jagabandhu has urged the government to response to the latest reaction of the Maoists after the deadline set by the outfit ended on April 10. The Laxmipur MLA has been held in captivity by the abductors since March 23.

Meanwhile, the Home Secretary Upendranath Behera made another appeal to the AOBSZC to release the MLA saying that the government had already started the legal process to facilitate the release of 23 prisoners.