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Thursday, April 15, 2021

Forty Years Ago, March 13, 1981: Hijacking Ends

Pakistan agreed to a demand by three heavily-armed armed plane hijackers to release 55 political prisoners.

By: Express News Service |
March 13, 2021 12:20:07 am
The Indian Express, March 13, 1981, forty years ago.

Only minutes before the threatened execution of three American hostages, Pakistan agreed to a demand by three heavily-armed armed plane hijackers to release 55 political prisoners. The hijackers, who seized the aircraft 11 days ago and took it to Afghanistan first and Syria after that, agreed to release the hostages after they saw the prisoners. It’s over, Pakistan’s Ambassador to Syria, Sarfraz Ahmed told newsmen. Meanwhile, Murtaza Bhutto has denied any involvement in the hijacking. He telephoned The Guardian to disclaim any association with the hijacking or with the international terrorist Carlos. Libya has also disclaimed any association with the event.

Dhaka Concerns

Home Minister Giani Zail Singh may take up the question of continuous infiltration from Bangladesh into Assam and other states when he visits Dhaka. Singh had accepted the invitation extended by his Bangladesh counterpart to visit Dhaka some time back but no date for his visit has been fixed. Though official sources describe it as a “goodwill” visit, border issues are likely to come up for discussions during his talks with Bangladesh leaders. India, in particular, is concerned about infiltration into Assam from across the border.

PSU Strike Called Off

With an unconditional resolution adopted at a massive workers rally, the 77-day strike at PSU enterprises in Bangalore has come to an end. The resolution was silent on the parity of wages with BHEL, the main plank of the strike that began on December 26, 1980. The resolution left it to the Joint Action front to continue negotiations to come to a “honourable settlement”.

IE’s New Editor

Surinder Nihal Singh has been appointed editor of The Indian Express. He takes over on April 1. He will succeed S Mulgaokar, who is retiring because of indifferent health.

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