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Three Kangra youths kidnapped in Nigeria released

All three serve in the merchant navy.

india Updated: Apr 11, 2018 21:40 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Dharamshala/New Delhi
Nigeria,Kangra youths,Himachal Pradesh
From left: Sushil Kumar, Pankaj and Ajay(HT Photo)

The three Indian nationals hailing from Himachal Pradesh who were kidnapped by pirates in Nigeria have been released, external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj said on Wednesday.

All three worked in the merchant navy and hailed from Kangra district in Himachal Pradesh.

“We have secured the release of Sushil Kumar, Pankaj Kumar and Ajay Kumar who were abducted in Nigeria,” Sushma Swaraj tweeted.

She also appreciated the efforts of Indian High Commissioner to Nigeria BN Reddy in this regard.

Meanwhile, Himachal Pradesh chief minister Jai Ram Thakur expressed gratitude to the Centre for the safe release of abducted Himachali men. “All three are safe and will reach India in another three days,” the CM said.

Union health minister JP Nadda also thanked the external affairs minister for their safe release. “I thank Hon’ble @SushmaSwaraj Ji and officials of Indian Embassy for their painstaking efforts in securing the safe release of three youths of Himachal Pradesh from captivity in Nigeria,” he tweeted.

Families delighted, thank government

Raghuvir Singh, father of one of the kidnapped men Sushil Kumar, expressed delight and thanked the Central government for securing safe release of his son and two others.

“Our legislator Arjun Singh called me around 2pm and informed that Sushil, Pankaj and Ajay have been released. I also had a word with former chief minister and BJP MP Shanta Kumar. I am very thankful to the government. Our agony has ended and we are happy,” said Singh.

Singh was first to raise the matter in media.

(With agency inputs)

First Published: Apr 11, 2018 20:39 IST