Press Trust of India
Thursday, August 30, 2012
Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal today appealed to the Centre to ensure the early release of sailor Aman Kumar, a resident of Kangra here, held captive by Somali pirates for the past 20 months.
Replying to a calling attention motion moved by G S Bali (Congress), Dhumal said he had taken up the matter with Union Minister of Shipping, G K Vasan, on August 16.
"Even the chief secretary took up the issue with secretary of the shipping ministry Pradeep K Sinha on August 23 and it is hoped that the Union government will take necessary steps to get him released," Dhumal said.
The Somali pirates hijacked Malaysian-flagged cargo ship MV Albedo on November 26, 2010, near Maldives in the Indian Ocean with all its 23 crew members.
The crew comprised seven Sri Lankans, five Bangladeshis, two Indians and seven Pakistanis. One Indian from Kolkata has already died.
Bali said as per his information, the pirates have demanded hefty ransom for Kumar's release.
"Many out of the captured persons have been released and the poor parents of Aman Kumar have not only approached the Chief Minister but also been writing to the President, the Prime Minister and several ministers concerned, but to no avail," he said.