Anti-POSCO agitators release three Koreans, one Indian official

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Bhubaneswar, Oct 13 (UNI) After keeping hostage for nearly six hours, the anti-POSCO agitators finally released three South Korean and an Indian official of the POSCO India project this evening.

The POSCO officials were released after the Officer-in-Charge of Kujang Police station gave an undertaking that no POSCO officials would enter into the proposed POSCO project area in future.

Police said senior General Manager, Construction K S Choi and two General Managers S H Nam and T J Ahn besides one Executive Dillip Ojha of POSCO India project were detained by the anti-POSCO agitators for visiting the Jatadhari mouth, a site proposed for construction of a port by the POSCO for its mega steel plant.

The anti-POSCO agitators took the four officials to Dhinkia village and confined them in a house for nearly six hours in protest against their entry into their area.

They also took the vehicle into their custody and detained the driver. The officials had gone to the Jatadhari river mouth near Paradip port to inspect the construction work of a road linking Port to the proposed Port.

Korean steel major POSCO (Pohang Iron and Steel Company) had signed an MoU with the Orissa government in June 2005 to set up a Rs 51,000 crore mega steel plant near Paradip, the largest FDI in the country.

Ever since POSCO signed the MoU, the company had been facing stiff opposition from the locals, who under the banner of POSCO Pratirodh Sangram Samitee had erected several checkgates in the villages prohibiting the entry of both government and POSCO officials into their area.

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