Family prays for release of engineers kidnapped in Nigeria


Guwahati : The family of one of the two Indian engineers kidnapped in Nigeria Saturday is shocked and is offering prayers for their release.

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In a pre-dawn attack, suspected militants abducted Debashish Kakoty, a 32-year-old fire expert hailing from the eastern Assam town of Sivasagar and Sunil Dave of Maharashtra from their residential quarters in Nigeria's oil capital Port Harcourt.

The two were working for Indonesia's Indorama, a reputed oil exploration company that is the majority owner of the Eleme petrochemical plant near Port Harcourt.

"Our daughter-in-law from Nigeria told us by telephone that the company management has established links with the abductors and negotiations were on for securing their release," Ajit Kakoty, a retired professor and father of the kidnapped fire expert, told IANS Sunday.

Debashish Kakoty, earlier an employee of the Indian Oil Corporation, joined Indorama and was posted to Nigeria in September last year.

"We are shocked after hearing about the abduction. We are left with no option other than praying for their safety and early release," Ajit Kakoty said by telephone from Sivasagar.

Indian authorities are in touch with its high commission in Nigeria over the kidnapping.

Saturday's abduction is the latest in a string of kidnappings of foreign workers – 13 others were still being held hostage in the Niger Delta, a vast wetlands region where all of Nigeria's oil reserves are located.

Militant groups demanding a greater share of government oil revenues have carried out bombings, kidnappings and protests in the region since 2005 that have already shut down a third of production in Africa's oil giant – a key supplier to the U.S.