Mediators ask CM to honour agreement

Bhubaneswar: Asking Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to honour the agreement between them and the state government to end the hostage crisis in February, three mediators on Friday demanded immediate release of 600 tribals and a halt to coercive action against rebels.

"It is six weeks since the agreement was reached, but no serious step was taken. On the contrary there were several instances which go against the very spirit of the agreement," a letter to Patnaik signed by the three mediators – Prof G Hargopal, Prof R S Rao and Dandapani Mohanty, said.

The three had signed an agreement with state government representatives for fulfilment of 14 demands made by Maoists who had held Malkangiri collector R Vineel Krishna and Junior Engineer Pabitra Mohan Majhi hostage for about a week in February.

Stating that non-implementation of the agreement would erode the confidence of the people in peaceful resolution of crisis, they said it could affect the credibility and legitimacy of the state power.

Besides assuring the mediators that the pact would be fully honoured, Patnaik had also announced it on the floor of the assembly, they said.

Citing an instance of alleged violation of the agreement, they claimed that on March 8, the Special Operations Group entered Harishchandrapur in Keonjhar District when an alleged attempt to rape of a girl was made.

The people protested and saved the girl, but the SOG opened fire at the people in which she was injured, they alleged.

She had filed a complaint with the State Human Rights Commission (Orissa) on March 29, they said.

The mediators attached a list of persons, they claimed were illegally detained in jail.