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HindustanTimes Mon,15 Sep 2014

Steps will be taken for Father Alexis's release: PM

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, June 12, 2014
First Published: 15:29 IST(12/6/2014) | Last Updated: 15:43 IST(12/6/2014)
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has assured Tamil Nadu chief minister Jayalalithaa that his government will spare no effort to ensure safe release of an abducted aid worker, Father Alexis Prem Kumar, in Afghanistan.
 
On June 4, Jayalalithaa had in a letter urged Modi to personally intervene and take up the matter with Afghanistan top brass to ensure the early release of Father Kumar, who was working with a Jesuit charity in the war-torn country.
 
Father Kumar was kidnapped earlier this month. Though three Taliban members have been arrested in this connection, no group has claimed responsibility for the abduction.
 
Modi had responded to Jayalalithaa's letter a day later, according to Tamil Nadu information department.
 
"I am deeply concerned by the abduction of Father Alexis Prem Kumar in Herat province of Afghanistan. I have been assured that the government of Afghanistan and authorities in Herat are taking every possible step to ensure his early release," the PM's letter said.
 
"Our ambassador in Kabul has been in regular touch with President's office and security agencies. My national security advisor has also spoken to his Afghan counterpart who has assured full and sustained efforts by the Afghan government to seek Father Alexis' release," the letter said.
 
The letter adds: "I can assure you that the government will spare no effort for the safe and earliest possible release of Father Prem Kumar. I will continue to monitor the situation very closely."

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