GUWAHATI: Assam Police on Wednesday claimed that the third kidnapped ONGC employee is still in the clutches of ULFA(I) militants and that they are hiding in Nagaland.
The search operation for the missing employee of the crude oil and gas major is on and the force is getting regular updates from security agencies, Special Director General of Police (Law and Order) Gyanendra Pratap Singh told reporters here.
The other two ONGC employees - Mohini Mohan Gogoi and Alakesh Saikia were rescued on April 24 after an encounter near the Indo-Myanmar border in Mon district of Nagalande third one was on.
"We have got specific information from Assam Rifles, the Army and Nagaland Police that Ritul Saikia is still in captivity of ULFA(I). They are hiding in Mon district," Singh said.
"We will be able to rescue him very soon," he added.
Hours after the rescue of Gogoi and Saikia, the banned ULFA(I) had issued a statement claiming that the outfit all the three ONGC employees in a village of Mon district during the encounter.
"The security forces are silent on Ritul Saikia (the third ONGC employee). We therefore suspect that he may have fallen to their bullets or the security agencies are refraining from revealing his status for their own reasons," the statement had claimed.
The three employees of the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) were kidnapped on April 21 from Lakwa oilfield in Sivasagar district along the Assam-Nagaland border.
The state police has arrested at least three persons, including one Assam Police constable, for their active role in the kidnapping.
Police also took into custody 20 persons for their alleged involvement or links with the banned outfit.