tata steel / engnieer kidnaped
Jajpur, Sept. 25: A civil engineer working at Tata Steel’s Kalinganagar Industrial Complex in Jajpur district is suspected to have been kidnapped on Friday.
The 36-year-old engineer, Mohammad Abdul Salimullah, who had gone to visit the proposed steel plant site at Masakhia in Kalinganagar, did not return.
Salimullah, who hails from Bijapur in Karnataka, was living with his parents, wife and two children at a village in the Jajpur road area.
According to a complaint lodged by Tata Steel with the Kalinganagar police on Friday night, Salimullah had visited the construction site in a Bolero car.
He had asked the driver to wait outside the complex while he went inside. After waiting for more than an hour, the driver went inside to look for the engineer but could not find him.
He immediately informed the company officials.
Tata Steel senior manager (security) P.K. Singh said officials tried to contact Salimullah on his mobile phone.
“It seems his mobile was switched off.
“We have informed the police, ” he said. Singh lodged a complaint with Kalinganagar police, suspecting that Salimullah might have been kidnapped by the anti-industry brigade.
“We had been waiting for his return last evening. When he did not return, we tried to contact him but he did not respond to the calls on his mobile phone.
“Then we called up office number but failed to locate him.
“Now, we are told that he is missing, ” said the missing engineer’s father Mahammad Rahat Mula.
“The company officials fear abduction, but we do not have any clue, ” said local police officer K.C. Mund.
Asked about the possibility of a Maoist hand in the matter, Jajpur superintendent of police D.S. Kutte said: “We are exploring all possibilities. Efforts are on to trace the engineer. Several places had been raided.”
The Kalinganagar industrial hub has witnessed several untoward incidents in the last four years over the construction of a Tata Steel plant.
On January 2, 2006, 13 tribals were killed in police firing here while they were resisting the construction of a boundary wall for the plant.
Irate tribals blocked the Daitari-Paradip express highway, considered the lifeline for the mineral-rich Keonjhar and Jajpur districts, for more than a year in protest against the firing.
The blockade was lifted following intervention of the high court.
Anti-plant protesters and supporters of the plant have clashed on several occasions in the past.