Bhubaneswar, Mar 20 (ANI): Terming the abduction of two Italian tourists by Maoists in Orissa to be a sensitive issue, Union Tourism Minister Subodh Kant Sahay said the state government should intervene and take effective measures to deal with the situation.
"This incident is very sensitive and might have serious repercussions as the safety of Italian tourists is at stake. Our first priority is that these people should be freed as soon as possible. It is important for us at the federal as well as at the state level to facilitate a healthy environment for tourists and avoid such grave situations," said Sahay.
"I believe the state administration should deal with this situation seriously and also safeguard the sanctity of Orissa, as it is a prime tourist location," he added.
Sahay further said the Maoist-hit states should work closely with the Central Government together to put an end to such a rebellion.
"Three to four states have to work closely to fight against Maoists. When there is pressure on Jharkhand, Maoists tend to move to other states; so all states have to fight together to sort out the issue," said Sahay.
"The state government should also effectively act in compliance with the Central Government's concentrated efforts to root out Maoists from the country," he added.
Meanwhile, reacting to media reports that the Maoists have named three negotiators, who would take up the talks on their behalf before the state government, Orissa Chief Secretary B K Patnaik said the government is still establishing the reliability of these reports.We have seen three names which have been appeared in the newspaper, so we are examining these three names and then government will take a view in this matter and the government will proceed forward," said Patnaik.
Maoists had earlier named Narayan Sanyal, Dandapani Mohanty and Biswapriya Kanungo as the mediators.
Maoists kidnapped Bosusco Paolo, 54 and Claudio Colangelo, 61 and kept them as hostages on the excuse that they were believed to have taken objectionable photographs of tribal women in Kandhamal-Ganjam border area of Orissa.
It is reported that the Maoists want the State Government to stop all combing operations and initiate dialogue with them.
The Maoists have demanded the state government to act on the 13-point charter of demands, which includes the release of political prisoners and the ending of Operation Greenhunt. (ANI)
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