NEDA Convenor and Assam Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma has appealed the ULFA-Independent to release the two abducted employees of Quippo Oil and Gas Infrastructure Limited.
Radio operator Ram Kumar (35), from Bihar and drilling Superintendent Pranab Kumar Gogoi (51) from Assam’s Sivasagar district were abducted by a group of ULFA-I and NSCN militants on December 21, while they were working at the Kumchaika drilling site in Changlang district of Arunachal Pradesh.
It has been over a month that the two employees were abducted by the cadres of the ULFA-I and NSCN.
“Both the persons are low-level employees. Captivating them will not benefit anyone. I urge ULFA-I to release both the employees of Quippo Oil and Gas Infrastructure Limited,” Himanta Biswa Sarma said on Sunday.
Earlier on January 30 (Saturday), the ULFA-Independent had claimed that the central intelligence agencies along with the Assam and Arunachal Pradesh Police forces are planning to kill the two abducted oil company employees.
The ULFA-Independent claimed that the Indian Armed Forces are “planning to kill the two abducted oil company employees instead of ensuring their safe release.”
“We are sure of the fact that instead of ensuring the safe release of the two oil company employees, the Indian armed forces are planning to kill the two persons and falsely blame the ULFA-Independent for their deaths,” an ULFA-Independent statement stated.
In its sensational statement, the ULFA-I further stated that “if any untoward incident happens to the two abducted employees of the Quippo Oil and Gas infrastructure Pvt Ltd, the ULFA-I will not be responsible for it. Instead the Indian Armed Forces will be the ones to be blamed”.
Prior to that, the ULFA-Independent had set February 16 as the deadline for oil company – Quippo Oil and Gas Infrastructure Limited, to secure the release of its employee Ram Kumar, who hails from Bihar.
Threatening to kill Ram Kumar, the ULFA-I said, “If there is no response from the company by February 16, necessary action will be taken against Ram Kumar the next day. There will be no further extension of time.”
ULFA-I has reportedly demanded a ransom of Rs 20 crore for the release of the abducted duo.
The ULFA-I had also released a video of the two kidnapped employees of the oil company where the duo can be seen pleading their respective State Governments and Chief Ministers to secure their early release.