Maoists may release the abducted police officer Atindranath Datta in an hour. The 34-year old officer in charge of Sankrail police station in West Midnapore district in the Maoist deominated zone was abducted on Tuesday afternoon.
The announcement of the release of Datta was made by Koteshwar Rao, alias Kishanji, 51, politburo member of the banned Communist Party of India (Maoist) within hours of the Midnapore district court granting bail to 23 suspected Maoists.
On Thursday morning 23 suspected Maoists arrested during the past few months from Lalgarh were granted bail.
Fourteen of those granted bail were women, and the rest nine, men. They were all held in Midnapore jail, about 170 kms to the west of Kolkata.
The move can be seen as a partial fulfilment of the demands Koteshwar Rao, alias Kishanji, 51, politburo member of the banned Communist Party of India (maoist) made on Wednesday night.
Rao said they were preparing a list of 78 names who, they demanded, should be released by the Bengal government.
The 23 who were released on Thursday morning were mentioned in the list.
The demand was placed by the Maoist leader about 36 hours after taking hostage Atindranath Datta, 34, officer in charge of Sankrail police station in the Maoist dominated West Midnapore district.
On Wednesday, the family members of Datta met Bengal Chief Minister Buddahdeb Bhattacharjee and pleaded with him to secure his release. Bhattacharjee assured them that the administration won't do anything that might jeopardise the safety of the officer.
State chief secretary Ashok Mohan Chakravarty had also said on Wednesday the government is willing to negotiate with the Maoists if specific requests come to them.