Nagaland: Kidnapped Khagaria man set free

Nagaland, April 6: After remaining in captivity for more than three months, Ram Kumar from Khagaria was set free by insurgents at Mon district in Nagaland. He is expected to return home in the next three to four days.

Kumar (28) is a native of Bahadurpur under the Aulauli police station area in Khagaria, Nagaland.

He along with his senior colleague Pranab Kumar Gogoi of Assam were kidnapped from an oil drilling site at Changlang district of Arunachal Pradesh by ULFA-I militants on December 21. Gogoi was set free on April 3. Both worked for a Delhi-based private oil drilling firm.

As per Kumar’s wife, she got to know that insurgents had initially demanded Rs 20 crore for their safe release.

Changlang deputy commissioner (DC) Devansh Yadav said that Kumar was set free at a location under the Tizit police station area in Mon district of Nagaland.

“He was handed over to the Assam Rifles. Security personnel took him to Tizit police station. A police team from Changlang has been sent to Mon,” he said.

Yadav said Kumar would be questioned by the police team and will have to undergo a medical examination.

“After that, he would be sent to his home in Bihar. If all procedures are completed, he would be sent home directly on Tuesday. Else, he may be brought to Changlang first for completing necessary steps before being sent home,” he said.

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Yadav said that Kumar and Gogoi were kept at different locations by the insurgents.

Gogoi was set free at another location. He was also sent home after interrogation,” he said.

To question whether the demands of the militants were met, Yadav said a special investigation team of Arunachal Pradesh police was handling the kidnapping case. “They would be able to tell what led to the breakthrough that got both of them released,” the DC said.

Khagaria DM Alok Ranjan Ghosh said he came to know about Kumar’s release via a message sent by the Changlang DC.

The Changlang district administration would make arrangements for his travel to Khagaria. He is expected to reach within the next two to three days,” Ghosh informs media.

I am thankful to the central, state, and Assam government for my husband’s release. The children are also happy to know that their father is coming home,” Kumar’s wife Bina, who has been praying for his release for the past three months, said.

Khagaria DM himself rang me up to inform me about my husband’s release. I am yet to talk to my husband. No one from his company has got in touch with me yet,” she said.

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It was on December 21 when she had last interacted with her husband over the phone. Kumar’s cellphone got switched off after 6 pm the same day. The next day, Bina came to know that Kumar had been kidnapped.

We will now visit AIIMS-Patna on April 21 for our son’s periodic treatment,” she added.

The couple’s five-year-old son is suffering from blood cancer while their eight-year-old daughter studies in class III.