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HindustanTimes Sun,20 Apr 2014

DC's abduction: Mediators hopeful of early release

Ejaz Kaiser, Hindustan Times  Raipur, April 29, 2012
First Published: 09:33 IST(29/4/2012) | Last Updated: 20:51 IST(29/4/2012)

With the fate of Alex Paul Menon, the Sukma collector, who was abducted by the red brigade still uncertain, the Maoist interlocutors who returned from the Naxals' hideout on Sunday morning said: "The collector is safe and in good health condition".

Former bureaucrat BD Sharma and Hyderabad-based Prof G Hargopal briefed the abductors on Saturday night about the stand of the state government on the demands set by rebels for ending the hostage crisis.

Both, however, refused to divulge the details regarding the progress on talks they had with the Maoists except that the meeting was constructive.



"There are no new demands. We are going to convey the outcome of the talks to the government. Will find some way out," said Prof Hargopal.

They are likely to disclose the outcome of the meeting held inside the jungle with the rebels to the government appointed mediators -- Nirmala Buch and Suyogya K Mishra. 

Earlier, the two rounds of negotiations held at Raipur between the mediators of the government and the Maoists remained inconclusive.

A 2006-batch IAS officer Menon (32) was abducted by the Maoists at gun point on April 21 from Majhipara village in Sukma, about 450 km south of Raipur, while he was addressing the villagers during the government sponsored village contact programme - Gram Suraj Abhiyan. 

The chief minister Raman Singh reiterated on Sunday that his government's top priority is to secure safe and early release of the district collector.

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