Maoists release tape, seek clarity on govt position | india | Hindustan Times
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Maoists release tape, seek clarity on govt position

The fate of abducted Italian Paolo Basusco remained gripped in uncertainty with Maoists issuing another audiotape on Sunday, seeking clarification from the Odisha government on the prisoners it was releasing in exchange for him. HT reports.

india Updated: Apr 09, 2012 00:24 IST
HT Correspondent
Priya Ranjan Sahu

In-this-undated-photograph-of-kidnapped-Italian-national-Paolo-Bosusco-poses-with-a-tribal-woman-at-an-undisclosed-location-in-India-AFP-Photo

The fate of abducted Italian Paolo Basusco remained gripped in uncertainty with Maoists issuing another audiotape on Sunday, seeking clarification from the Odisha government on the prisoners it was releasing in exchange for him.

"The government is creating confusion. A clarification on some issues through the media would pave the way for Paolo's release," Maoist leader Sabyasachi Panda said in the tape.

"We had demanded the release of seven persons while the government said it was freeing six. Finally it announced the release of five," said Panda, adding the government hadn't cleared its position on the other demands.

A message also surfaced about the March 24 abduction of BJD MLA Jhina Hikaka. A letter, purportedly by the Andhra Odisha Border Special Zonal Committee, offered to free Hikaka if his wife reached Balipeta village in Koraput district on April 10 with all the 30 prisoners whose release had been demanded.

There was no official confirmation about the authenticity of the letter written in Telugu.

Chief minister Naveen Patnaik convened an emergency meeting on Sunday.

The state government also discussed the new demands of the Andhra Odisha Border Special Zonal Committee, which wanted the release of five more Maoists in addition to the eight the government announced for letting off Hikaka.