Security has been further tightened around the official residence of Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar in Patna following the kidnapping of policemen in Lakhisarai district. The Centre on Friday said that it is providing the state government "full support."
All routes leading to the chief minister's residence have been sealed and patrolling intensified in the security zone area, a top state official said.
Additional security personnel were deployed at the checkposts in the routes of the residence near Raj Bhavan and also the road leading to the Sanjay Gandhi Zoological Park, and Desh Ratna Marg, besides the 4 KG area which also houses Chief Minister's office.
Earlier, Avinash, a self-proclaimed Maoist spokesman, said that Maoists want to hold talks with the chief minister. "We are keen to talk with the chief minister on the issue," he said.
Kumar also said the eight Maoists lodged in different jails in Bihar, whose release is being demanded by the Maoists, are being taken care of well, and he expected the rebels to give the same treatment to the abducted policemen.
"We respect the human rights of any person arrested, because this is a democracy. We look after their health, and the Left Wing rebels are part of our society. We also expect the same treatment of our people (policemen) by the Maoists,' he said.
'Centre vows full support'
The Centre today said that it is providing "full support" to Bihar government in the operation to rescue policemen held hostages by Maoists.
"This is being handled by the State and we are giving them full support whatever they are asking for. We gave one helicopter on Thursday and another is going today and whatever force is available, it is being made available to them," said Joint Secretary (Naxal Management) in Ministry of Home Affairs Kashmir Singh.
Security forces have intensified search operations in the hilly and forest areas in Dharhara, Kajra and several other places in Bihar's Munger, Jamui and Lakhisarai districts to trace the kidnapped policemen.