Abducted CRPF commando freed by Naxals in Chhattisgarh

KT NEWS SERVICE. Dated: 4/9/2021 12:53:20 AM

NEW DELHI, Apr 8: A CoBRA commando abducted by Naxals after the Bijapur ambush in Chhattisgarh on April 3 was released on Thursday, official sources said.
The photograph of CoBRA commando Rakeshwar Singh Manhas purportedly released by the Naxals.
They said constable Rakeshwar Singh Manhas of the 210th Commando Battalion for Resolute Action (CoBRA) was freed by the Maoists this evening after a team of few eminent people, including a person from the tribal community, was nominated by the state government to secure his release.
Chattisgarh IG confirmed the release of the captive commando. The news spread cheer among the authorities, security personnel and his family members.
After taking the commando captive, the Maoists put forth some demands and said that they would release him safely. The Maoists released a picture of Manhas ‘in their captivity’ which raised several doubts about his safety.
The picture showed the commando in a relaxed mood and in conversation with someone in the camp. He also had no injuries which led to several doubts if the picture was real or an old one.
An unverified picture shared by security officials showed Manhas wearing his green coloured jungle combat dress and standing with at least four "mediators" with a number of locals sitting in the forested background.
Another picture showed the commando riding pillion on a motorbike with a local journalist while another photo showed a scribe clicking selfie with him.
One of the eminent persons instrumental in the release was identified by security agencies as social worker Dharampal Saini.
The jawan has been handed over to CRPF's Deputy Inspector General (Bijapur) Komal Singh at the Basaguda camp in Bijapur and his medical checkup is underway, sources in the paramilitary force said.
They said the jawan will be kept at a camp and will soon be put through a "debriefing" session to understand the circumstances as to how he was taken away by the Maoists and what happened with him during the custody.
Officials had said that the 'buddy' of Manhas had told officers that the jawan sat down exhausted during the ambush while on their way back to their camp on the fateful day.
A heavy exchange of gunfire is cited as the probable reason for the commando getting detached from his unit and buddy.
Twenty-two security personnel were killed while 31 others were injured in the deadly ambush that took place on April 3 along the Bijapur-Sukma district border.
Meanwhile, Rakeshwar Singh Manhas’s 5-year-old daughter Shragvi had made an emotional appeal for her father’s release from Maoist captivity.
“Papa kipari Papa ko bohat miss karrahihai. Mai apnay Papa se bohatpyaarkartihun. Please, Naxal uncle, mere Papa ko gharbhej do (Papa’s fairy is missing her papa, I love my father very much, please Naxal uncle spare my father and send him home),” Manhas’s daughter was heard saying in the video which has gone viral and seems to have melted the hearts of Naxals.



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