Hostage crisis: Orissa to "honour" commitments to mediators

Posted By: Pti
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Bhubaneswar, Feb 25 (PTI) A day after the release ofMalkangiri District Collector R V Krishna, Orissa governmenttoday assured the Maoist-selected mediators that it would"honour" the commitments made during the negotiations held toresolve the hostage crisis.

The assurance was given by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaikhere when the three mediators - Prof Hargopal, Prof R SomeswarRao and Dandapani Mohanty - met him at the state secretariat.

"We will certainly honour the commitments made to themediators," Patnaik told reporters, adding that as many as 14issues were mutually agreed between the two sides during thefive-day-long negotiations.

However, the state government has told the mediators thatit will not accept the additional demands made by theout-lawed outfit while keeping Krishna in their captivity.

Among the major agreements with the mediators, the stategovernment has committed that there would be no coerciveaction by the security forces as long as Maoists do notindulge in any unlawful activities.

"The government made this commitment in response to theMaoists'' demand to immediately stop operation green hunt,"Home Secretary U N Behera said.

On the demand relating to the withdrawal of cases,release of tribals and Chasi Mulia Adivasi Sangha members inKoraput and Malkangiri district, the state government hascommitted that it would take steps for withdrawal of minorcases against the adivasis.

"The government of Orissa will, within a period of threemonths, review cases against the tribals held on charges ofMaoists activities and land-related disputes in Narayanpatnaarea of Koraput district," the Home Secretary said.

Regarding the Maoists'' demand for release of its centralcommittee member Ashtosh Sen and other members - includingSriramlu Srinivasalu, Gananath Patra, Jeevan Bose, GantiPrasadam, Kandula Sirisha, Andaluri Eswari and Sarita -currently in jail, the state government agreed that it wouldtake steps for withdrawal of the November 13, 2010 caseagainst them.

While Ganti Prasadam had already been granted bail, thestate government committed that the matter would be examinedon merit regarding the others.

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