Millennium Post

LS concerned about Indian hostages in Somalia

Concern was expressed in Lok Sabha today over the plight of seven Indians held hostage in Somalia for 28 months now, with a Congress member asking the government to urgently establish contact with the abductors and get them released.

Asking the government not to abandon them, Manish Tewari said, 'Please open all back channels to establish contact with the abductors and get them released, as the physical condition of many of them is very critical. Otherwise it may be too late.'

Raising the matter during Zero Hour, he said seven Indians had been held captive for over 28 months by 'a clan' to get their members, arrested for piracy by Indian authorities, released.

He said the families of these Indians were 'running from pillar to post' but not getting any help from the government.

His party colleague P L Punia expressed concern over the dropping ratio of females to males, especially in states like Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan, Gujarat and Delhi, saying this was primarily due to the growing incidence of female foeticide.

Observing that the male-female ratio in age group of 0-6 years was as low as 1000-914, he said this was far below the average in the neighbouring countries and demanded stringent steps to prevent female foeticide.

P Karunakaran (CPI-M) said a large number of people were suffering due to the usage of banned pesticide Endosulfan, especially in Kasargode area of Kerala.

Demanding immediate steps by the government to come to their aid and allocate funds for their treatment, he said the victims, including children, were suffering from grave diseases, apart from physical deformities including blindness.
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