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Taliban threatens to kill abducted Indian in Afghanistan
April 29, 2006 20:44 IST
Taliban militia, holding an Indian engineer hostage in southern Afghanistan, on Saturday evening threatened to kill him if all Indians do not leave the country within 24 hours, prompting the government to intensify efforts to secure his early and safe release.
The Hyderabad-based family of 41-year-old K Suryanarayan, who was abducted on Friday evening on the Kandahar-Kabul highway in Hassan Kareiz district of Zabul, appealed to the abductors to free him without any harm. His Afghan driver was also abducted.
A high-level meeting, chaired by Cabinet Secretary B K Chaturvedi, was held in New Delhi to review the evolving developments.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is also being kept briefed about the situation.
A father of three, Suryanarayan had gone to Afghanistan four months ago and was working with a Bahrain-based company Al Moayad, which is engaged in a project for Afghan mobile phone service provider Roshan Telecom.
Issuing the threat, a man claiming to be the spokesman for Taliban called up news agency AP and claimed that Suryanarayan was an "American spy".
"We warn all Indians working here to leave Afghanistan within 24 hours starting 6 pm (7 pm IST) Saturday, otherwise we will kill him," the caller identifying himself as Qari Yousef Ahmadi was quoted saying.
Ahmadi releases regular statements on behalf of Taliban.
Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran said the government was in touch with the Afghan authorities and had intensified efforts to seek early and safe release of the hostage.