Paramilitary group abducts Muslims, demands ransom

[TamilNet, Sunday, 18 June 2006, 14:02 GMT]
11 Muslim dairy farm workers out of a group of 18, going out to work from the Muslim village of Thambalai, were abducted Saturday by the Karuna paramilitary group on Pollonaruwa-Sunkavil road, 10 k.m. east of Pollonaruwa. The abductees were being held in the close by jungles of Sinnavil, with ransom demands of 1 million rupees, relatives of the farm workers said. Thambalai villagers have managed to collect 100,000 rupees, and paid the abductors who then released 5 farm workers, and demanded 500,000 rupees for the release of the remaining 4.

The abductees are detained and guarded by 6 armed paramilitaries in Sri Lankan Army (SLA) uniform and 1 in casual dress, Thambalai villagers said.

The paramilitaries released two of the workers, a father and his son, to communicate the 1 million rupees ransom demand on Saturday.

Local police, though aware of the incident, are not taking any action saying no complaints were made, said village sources.

The incident has taken place in the Bulasthigama police division.

The fear stricken villagers are fleeing the village to stay in safety with friends and relations elsewhere.

Thambalai is located 13 km northeast of Polonnaruwa. Sinnawil is located 3 km southeast of Thambalai, in the Mahaweli river (Mahaweli B) area.


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