Mr. B. D. Sharma, one of the interlocutors, at Bhubaneswar Airport
Mr. B. D. Sharma, one of the interlocutors, at Bhubaneswar Airport
Bhubaneswar: Talks to secure the release of two Italians held hostage by Maoists remained inconclusive Thursday with the interlocutors named by the ultras insisting authorities to bring any of top jailed Maoists to speed up the process. Talks will resume on Friday.

The interlocutors — Dandapani Mohanty and B.D.Sharma — held discussions for over one and half hours with the three senior state officials, P.K.Jena, Santosh Sarangi and U.N.Behera at state guest house here.

An officer who represented the government said the Thursday talks were a general discussion and a formal discussion will continue Friday, he said.

Both Sharma and Mohanty said they want the participation of any one of the jailed Maoist leaders — Kobad Ghandy, Amit Bagchi and Narayan Sanyal — to speed up the negotiation process.

They placed all the 13 Maoists demands before the officials and said they expected a response from them. They also said the hostages are safe and in good health.

Mohanty said the guerillas have agreed to release one of the Italians if the government accepts two of their demands — release of five ultra and action against policemen accused of staged killings and rape.

Meanwhile Maoist leader Sabyasachi Panda alias ‘Suni” who has claimed responsibility for the abduction said the government must bring any one of the top jailed Maoist leaders for dialogue.

The Italians Bosusco Paolo, 54, and Claudio Colangelo, 61 were abducted from the border of Ganjam and communally sensitive Kandhamal district March 14.

The demands the rebels have placed for their release include a ban on the visit of tourists to the tribal areas; halt on anti Maoist operation, and release of several prisoners.

Source: IANS