Rakeshwar Singh Manhas, the commando from the Central Reserve Police Force’s elite CoBRA unit, who was kidnapped by Naxals during the Bijapur attack on April 3, has been released by them, police sources said.
“Today is the happiest day of my life. I always remained hopeful of his return. I thank the government,” said his wife Meenu.
This comes hours after the Chhattisgarh Police said that there have been “positive developments” in their efforts to rescue Singh, who is a commando of CRPF’s 210th battalion of Commando Battalion for Resolute Action (CoBRA).
On Tuesday, the banned Communist Party of India (Maoist) had released an open letter in which it had confirmed that Singh was in their custody and had asked the central and state governments to name mediators for his release. However, the Maoists didn’t raise any formal demands for the release of Singh.
“We are ready to negotiate with the government. They can announce mediators. We will release him (captive jawan). Police jawans are not our enemies,” the Naxals had said in their letter.
Twenty-two security personnel lost their lives while 31 sustained injuries in an encounter that broke out between security forces and Naxals along the Chhattisgarh’s Sukma-Bijapur border on Saturday after a party of jawans were ambushed by Naxals near Jonnaguda village.