All Adivasi National Liberation Army
Formation and Objectives
The All Adivasi National Liberation Army (AANLA) was formed in the second half of 2006.
The AANLA claims to be fighting to safeguard the tribal culture of the plantation workers whose ancestors were brought from northern India by British colonialists. The outfit demands Scheduled Tribe (ST) status for the Adivasi community and rehabilitation of the displaced members of its community. Official sources, however, indicate that AANLA is not a well-organised group and it does not have well-thought out aims and objectives.
Area of Operation
The Golaghat and Karbi Anglong districts of Assam are the primary area of operation for the outfit. Few arrests of the AANLA cadres have also been reported from the western Assam district of Kokrajhar and the Dimapur city of Nagaland.
The AANLA is headed by its chief commander David Tirkey alias Nirmal. Tirkey as per intelligence reports in Decmber 2007 is believed to be located in Jharkhand. A senior leader of the outfit Bikash alias Raj Munda was arrested in Guwahati on Decmber 10, 2007. Another senior leader Rupen Lakra was arrested on January 8, 2008 from Baghjan in the Karbi Anglong district. Prem Kawar is the Karbi Anglong District chief of the outfit.
The outfit has an estimated cadre strength of 100. The armed cadres of the outfit, however, are not believed to be more than 20. Weapons available with the outfit include AK series Rifles, carbines, pistols, .38 revolvers, grenade launchers, SLRs etc. The outfit is also believed to be in possesion of sophisticated explosive material. Some of the AANLA cadres have also been trained to assemble improvised explosive devices (IEDs).
The outfit primarily targets the tea gardens of the Golaghat and Karbi Anglong districts for extortion. It abducts estate managers in the event of non-payment of its demand. Few activities of extortion by AANLA cadres have also been reported from the Tinsukia district.The outfit reportedly shares a portion of the extorted amount with the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) and the NSCN-IM.
Police sources have indicated that the ULFA played a significant role in its formation. The National Socialist Council of Nagaland-Isak-Muivah (NSCN-IM), too, shares strategic linkages with the outfit.
The AANLA also has operational linkages with the Manipur-based Kuki Revolutionary Army (KRA). The KRA has provided training and logistic support to the AANLA. KRAís training camp at Singhasan in the Karbi Anglong district has reportedly been used for training the AANLA militants. KRA reportedly charges INR 5000 per month per head to train AANLA cadres. It also sells arms and ammunition to the AANLA.
Source:Compiled from news reports and are provisional.