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Orissa: Rail staff freed, with rider

Posted by Admin on September 13, 2009

Trapped_between1_p10OUR BUREAU

Jamshedpur/Bhubanes-war, Sept. 12: Ordeal of the five railway employees, who were abducted by CPI(Maoist) from Topadih station in Orissa’s Sundergarh district, ended after they were released late last evening somewhere in the forest bordering Jharkhand and Orissa.

The Maoists may have released them, but sent word they were issuing a 15-day ultimatum to Orissa police to release 30 villagers from their custody, failing which they would again abduct the five railwaymen, other railway employees and Orissa police personnel to be tried at a jan adalat.

The RPF’s Bondamunda unit reached Rengra station in Sundergarh district today and escorted the railwaymen — senior station master Netrananda Majhi, assistant station master Upendra Kumar and porters Mohammed Taz, S.C. Majhi and R.N. Mohanto — to their respective homes.

However, there were conflicting reports on the place of their release.

While sources said the Maoists released the abducted railway employees in the jungles near Baljore Kadamtoli village in Sundergarh, Rourkela superintendent of police Diptesh Patnaik said the Maoists had released them in dense forest near Kiriburu in Jharkhand.

Later, the rebels directed the railwaymen to walk to the nearby Rengra station, about 70km from Rourkela.

The sources added that the abducted employees were made to walk blindfolded through jungles along with their abductors after they were picked up around 1.30am on September 10. “The group reached the jungles near Baljore Kadamtoli village around 6pm yesterday. They walked to Rengra station later,” they said.

Rourkela superintendent of railway police R.K. Bal confirmed the release. “The RPF is taking them back,” he added.

Shailesh Chandra, the officer in charge of RPF Bondamunda, said that they had taken the railwaymen in their custody soon after they were found at Rengra station last night.

“We kept them in our custody for the whole night,” Chandra, who led the operation added. TT

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