Meghalaya Timeline - 2017
Eleven traders were abducted by
suspected militants near Gasuapara in South Garo Hills. However,
out of 11, eight traders managed to escape from the abductors.
The three traders, who are still in the captivity of the abductors,
are identified as Tamal Dey (38), Dulan Mahanta (36) and Durgapada
Dutta (35). All these three traders are from Dalu in West Garo
According to the sources, the
GNLA still had 30 active members including self-styled 'c-in-c'
Sohan D Shira and others wanted leaders like Kamdak and Megam.
The Meghalaya DGP Swaraj Bir Singh said, "The GNLA has been weakened
but there is certain nucleus located in separate areas that needed
to be overrun." The sources also said that the GNLA was still
in touch with the ULFA-I leadership.
Meghalaya Police announced a reward
of INR 200,000 on the whereabouts of Reding T. Sangma, the 'c-in-c'
of militant group ASAK. SP of South Garo Hills District, Anand
Mishra, while announcing the reward, said, "Any person who provides
any information which leads to the apprehension of Reding T. Sangma
will be rewarded in cash a sum of INR 2 lakh by the office of
the Superintendent of Police, South Garo Hills."
State Police officials stated that the GNLA militants
had started using children as a shield to protect themselves from
the ongoing operations being carried out by SFs in Garo Hills
Districts. SP (South Garo Hills), Anand Mishra, in this regard,
said, "With pressure mounting on GNLA militants, whose strength
is dwindling, the use of children by the militants has been reported
from parts of South Garo Hills." Police have reports from several
villages that the militants had taken away many children. According
to the sources, the militants are using the children also to get
information about the movement of security personnel and to carry
ration, besides entrusting them to do other menial jobs. The Police
official also said that a Police team had visited several villages
and contacted parents to know the whereabouts of their missing
Abductors released three traders, identified as
Tamal Dey (38), Dulan Mahanta (36) and Durga Pada Dutta (35),
from their captivity at an unidentified place near Telekali Reserve
Forest close to Rongrikkimgre village in South Garo Hills District.
The trio was abducted by a group of criminals linked to Bangladesh
from a place near Gasuapara in South Garo Hills District on January
10. The role of the militant group ASAK also came to the fore
as reports emerged about the abductors seeking the help of 'c-in-c'
Reding T. Sangma to aid in the negotiation for ransom with an
assurance of a share of the loot. The families of the abducted
people paid a ransom of INR 25,000.
Extortion activities, which had been on the wane
since the announcement of demonetisation, have resumed once again
in the Garo Hills Districts, albeit with the activities confined
mainly to the coal belt areas for now. "There were stories going
around about people being kidnapped by militants not for extortion
but for depositing their old notes. It did happen in many interior
areas of South and North Garo Hills, where militants pressurized
villagers to deposit their old notes," said a highly placed Police
source. Some businessmen too of these two Districts may have been
pressured to deposit old notes by the outfits.
Police recovered thirty gelatin sticks and twenty-four
fuses from one abandoned labour camp at Mynpher under Nongkhlieh
area in Jaintia Hills District.
One unidentified civilian got killed in the crossfire
between GNLA and Police in the remote Rongsu Agal area in South
Garo Hills District. According to the report, GNLA militants opened
fire on the Police team which had reached the spot after receiving
information about the hideout which was used by GNLA 'c-in-c'
Sohan D Shira. Police recovered a shotgun and several live rounds
of AK ammunition from the militant hideout.
A GNLA linkman, identified as Tengman D Shira
(25), was arrested by Police in Thapa Darengchi village in North
Garo Hills District. Police recovered one 7.65 mm pistol with
three rounds (Chinese make), 9 mm pistol with eight rounds (factory
made), one Chinese pistol with 18 rounds and four magazines from
the arrested linkman.
SFs arrested one GNLA linkman identified as Thengman
Sangma (25) from Thapa Agitchak village in North Garo Hills District.
Three pistols and 25 rounds of live ammunition were recovered
from the arrestee.
The civilian victim of the crossfire that took
place between GNLA militant and Police remote Rongsu Agal area
in South Garo Hills District on January 19 was identified as Kerok
R Marak (23) by the villagers.
Four unidentified civilians were abducted by suspected
ASAK militant, from Kolapara village near Sibbari in South Garo
Hills District. According to Police, six armed cadre of suspected
ASAK militant waylaid a truck and a bus and abducted the two drivers
and two helpers at gunpoint.
In a joint statement, the CorCom, GNLA, HNLC and
the ULFA-I called for a 'total shut down' in the entire North
East India on Indian Republic day (26th January). In the joint
statement issued by the militant groups asserted that the 'WESEA'
should 'collectively boycott' the Indian Republic Day on January
SFs arrested two HNLC militants, identified as
Samuel Wahlang Pahsyntiew (30) and Hebingstun Khongbuh (18) from
Shillong in East Khasi Hills District. Police said that both are
new cadres of HNLC, but Samuel Wahlang Pahsyntiew was trained
in Bangladesh camp of the militant group.
Three abducted persons from West Garo Hill District,
identified as Muzamil Haque, Biswajit Neogi alias Bappi and Mohammad
Rouf Asraf Ayub, were released by the abductors of ASAK militant
in the Ramchenga jungles near Dumnikura in South Garo Hills District.
A GNLA militant, identified as 'deputy commander'
and working with the 'finance wing' Ninja M. Sangma alias Megam
(23), surrendered before the Police at Williamnagar in East Garo
Hills District. He, however, did not deposit any weapons. Sangma
has informed Police that the finance unit comprised seven cadres
prior to his surrender and has now been further reduced to five
men after another member disappeared a few weeks ago apparently
to form his own group.
Police arrested three militants belonging to ASAK
along with one cadre of the GNLA at South Garo Hills District.
The ASAK militants, who were arrested in between January 31-February
1, were identified as Sahid Ch Marak (26), Lamingstone Ch Sangma
(29) and Jainish R Marak (29).The GNLA militant, who was arrested
from Gare Nawak village, near Nangalbibra was identified as Herod
R Marak (32).
Meghalaya DGP S.B. Singh said that the 'c-in-c'
of the disbanded militant group- UALA, Norrok X. Momin, was not
traceable and probably he was on the run since there were criminal
cases pending against him. UALA was disbanded on June, 2016. Earlier
in December 2015, the UALA signed a peace pact with the Indian
The senior leader of the GNLA militant, Ninja
M Sangma (23) alias Megam, who surrendered on February
1, revealed that there were only 27 cadres left in the militant
group. Furthermore, he revealed that besides these cadres, there
were also five other cadres of ULFA-I militant who were still
working with 'c-in-c' of GNLA, Sohan D Shira.
Acting on inputs, Police raided the house of Raimond
Lyngdoh (30) at Kudeng Rim village under Amlarem in West Jaintia
Hills District and recovered one country-made gun, pellets, one
steel pipe [apparently for manufacturing the gun barrel]. Police
also arrested the house owner.
Police said that the 'chief' of the ASAK militant,
Reding T. Sangma, who is currently on the run, is reportedly using
Bangladeshi mobile SIM cards to avoid detection. According to
the Police the militant leader is also using other modern software
which is easily available in the market to avoid Police tracking.
In some declassified reports of CIA of the United
States of America, it was revealed that the North Eastern militant
groups had been receiving Chinese assistance in terms of arms
and training since 1960s. The CIA report was submitted on July
26, 1968 and from the report it is evident that the militant groups
of the Northeast were receiving help from China even during that
time. The report said that the Naga militants first established
contacts with China in December, 1966. The report revealed that
the first batch of approximately 200 militants crossed over to
Northern Burma (now Myanmar) to obtain arms training in Yunnan.
In a statement, the disbanded ANVC-B threatened
to work against the Indian National Congress party led Meghalaya
MUA-II Government in the upcoming 2018 assembly elections in Garo
Hills area. In the statement the ANVC-B alleged that the Government
had not respected the peace agreement signed by them and the State
Government including the Central Government of India. The statement
further accused the State Government that they had been trying
to 'create division' between the 'leadership' and the general
cadres of the ANVC-B.
The BSF arrested three illegal citizens of Bangladesh
from Baghmara in South Garo Hills District and another one at
Lalghat in South West Garo Hills District. The arrested illegal
Bangladeshi citizens were identified as Mohammad Rukoddin (18),
Sharif Miya (15), Mohammad Ridul Islam (16) and Mohammad Zuwel
Seven workers of a limestone quarry at Sangkini
Dabgre near Sangkinigre village of Chokpot region in South Garo
Hills District were abducted by suspected Garo militants. The
workers were identified as Shyama Rabha, Manoj Das, Dipak Baiswa,
Khitish Rabha, Amulya Kalita, Dinobandhu Roy and Kameshwar Pandit.
According to the Police, the ASAK headed by Reding T. Sangma is
the prime suspect for involving the abduction so far. However,
they are also not ruling out the involvement of Sohan D. Shira-led
GNLA, which is said to have a small number of armed cadres operating
in the Chokpot region.
Clarifying the stand of the present Union Government
towards insurgents groups, the UMHA has indicated to a parliamentary
panel that it is open to negotiations with only those militant
formations that abjure violence and opt for a solution within
the Constitution of India. The Government proposes to adopt a
multi-pronged strategy to deal with extremists/separatists of
the northeastern region. The parliamentary panel in its report
advised that the government should start dialogue with these groups
and address sympathetically their grievances within the framework
of the Constitution of India with an aim of bringing them into
the mainstream. The multi-pronged strategy includes this aspect
Currently, the Union government is engaged in
peace talks with various insurgent groups of the Northeast and
talks are continuing with the ULFA-PTF, NDFB-P, NDFB-RD, KLNLF-
all from Assam, while the NSCN-IM, NSCN-KN and NSCN-R of Nagaland
are under ceasefire agreements.
A total of 23 underground outfits of Manipur,
consisting two conglomerates - the UPF and KNO are currently under
SoO agreement with the Union Government. Three valley-based underground
outfits of Manipur - the URF, KCP-L and KYKL-MDF have signed MoU
with the Union Government.
The Union Government has informed that pursuant
to the policy of talks, various insurgent outfits, including the
UPDS, DHD of Assam and ANVC and ANVC-B of Meghalaya have signed
memorandum of settlement with the Government and dissolved themselves.
As a result, a number of members of insurgent outfits have surrendered
after laying down arms and joined the mainstream of society.
Suspected militants of Reding T. Sangma led ASAK
released the seven abducted limestone quarry workers at Kama Adugre
near Sangkinigre in South Garo Hills District. The six lorry drivers
and a mechanic, identified as Shyama Rabha, Manoj Das, Dipak Baiswa,
Khitish Rabha, Amulya Kalita, Dinobandhu Roy and Kameshwar Pandit,
were sleeping at the quarry site at Sangkini Dapgre village in
Chokpot (South Garo Hills) when they were abducted on February
14. The men after their release walked on foot to reach the main
road early on February 19th morning and further went to their
respective homes. Although it is not clear whether any ransom
money was paid to secure their release, Police is not completely
ruling out this possibility.
'Chairman' Bernard N Marak of the now disbanded
ANVC-B alleged that the account numbers of the former cadres were
submitted without the knowledge of the 'leaders' of the outfit
and described it as an attempt to derail the Garo settlement with
corrupt intention and also to deprive the ex-cadres of their due
packages. According to him on December 9, 2016 former ANVC-B 'leaders'
and senior members had a meeting where all cadres, clarified how
Police made them to believe that accounts were to be submitted
to the Police else they will not receive any packages.
||A team of Special Force-10
commandos, in an encounter, killed a GNLA militant, Walamdaria M.
Sangma, at Riangdim village in Shallang in West Khasi Hills District.
A group of GNLA militants were there to collect tax from coal dealers
||The 'chairman' of GNLA, Champion
Sangma, was granted bail by a lower court, more than four years
after his arrest from an area near Indo-Bangladesh border on July
The State Government revealed that it incurred
a loss of INR 259.4 million in terms of salary to its employees,
including teachers, during the agitations in 2013 called by 14
pressure groups demanding implementation of the ILP system in
The loss was highlighted in the deposition made
before the Special Court dealing with ILP-related case by Commissioner
and Secretary of the Personnel Department L. Diengdoh.
Four senior cadres of the GNLA, including an area
commander, surrendered to Police at Williamnagar in East Garo
Hills. The four militants, 'commander' Sengbat Ch Momin alias
Kamdak, Wesefield Ch Marak alias Dakchak, Joshua N. Marak alias
Kolgrik alias Balmika and Tush M. Marak alias Gotcheng, submitted
three automatic rifles and ammunitions during the surrender.
The BSF has informed the BGB that seven militant
outfits from the Northeast have set up as many as 20 camps in
Bangladesh. Sources in the BSF said the NLFT has 10 camps, HNLC
from Meghalaya's Khasi hills has three camps, ULFA-I and MPLA
have two camps each while GNLA of Meghalaya, PREPAK and KYKL,
both from Manipur, have a camp each.
A Police team included SF-10 commandos, in an
encounter, killed 'c-in-c' of disbanded UALA, Singbirth N. Marak
alias Norok. X. Momin, who was on the run, in a hideout
located inside a forest near Thapa Matronggre village in North
Garo Hills District. The Police team recovered a Chinese AK-47
rifle, a US pistol, one hand grenade, ammunition, SIM cards and
some documents from the encounter site. "The gunfight began when
the armed militants fired at the commandos while resisting to
surrender," Dalton P, Marak, the SP of North Garo Hills, said.
Police further claimed that four others had managed to flee the
spot under the cover of darkness.
Singbirth N Marak alias Norok X Momin, who had
reluctantly participated in the disbanding ceremony on June 9,
2016, allegedly hid a sizeable number of arms from the Police.
In 2016, East Garo Hills District Police intercepted a cache of
weapons and ammunition that were being shipped to GNLA and also
recovered the payment amounting to several lakhs of rupees that
was paid for the weapons. With a red alert against him, Norok
slipped into Assam and began the process of forming a new militant
group with the support of NDFB, ULFA and a section of UALA which,
according to Police, had already been named as UANF.
Unidentified militants abducted a coal labourer,
identified as Azanur Islam, from a coal mine at Era Aning under
Nangalbibra in East Garo Hills District.
The 'chairman' of the GNLA, Champion Sangma was
back in judicial custody due to the case of extortion in Baghmara
of South Garo Hills District, in which he was charge sheeted by
the Police. Earlier, on February 21 Champion Sangma was granted
bail by the lower court in connection with another case.
The 'c-in-c' of the ASAK militant, Reding T Sangma
alias Saljapang, surrendered before Police along with seven other
cadres of the militant group at Baghmara in South Garo Hills District.
The other cadres who surrendered along with Reding are identified
as Tengrang A. Sangma alias Gring (18), Seldom K. Sangma alias
Jorai (25), Pintu R. Marak alias Waira (19), Kiljang M Sangma
alias Amrak (17), Hame Ch Marak (25), Biani Ch Marak (28)
and Tengman M. Sangma (28). Police recovered a German made Heckler
and Koch automatic rifle with 128 live rounds, three single barrel
shotguns (SBBL), four walkie-talkie communication handsets and
22 electronic detonators and explosive powder from the surrendered
A GNLA militant, identified as Chadam Ramed A
Marak alias Mad alias Chitmang (22), surrendered
before Police at Baghmara in South Garo Hills District.
The State Government has made a shift in the Government's
approach to ending militancy in the State. Unlike in the past
when there would be repeated appeals to militants for talks, the
Government is now focusing on facilitating the rebels to surrender.
CM Mukul Sangma announced the appointment of Former
State DGP, Rajiv Mehta, as the State's maiden security adviser.
CM Mukul Sangma, explaining the logic behind the decision, said
that the State required a dedicated and experienced person with
a thorough knowledge of the State and the region while dealing
with internal security. CM further said the security adviser will
give suggestions and recommendations regarding strategies while
dealing with state security, border issues with neighboring countries
like Bangladesh, human rights issues and strengthening Police
organisation, among others. The appointment is for the duration
of one year.
In addition, the SSC has not decided whether officiating
DGP S.B. Singh should be given full charge or if the panel should
opt for a new DGP. The CM informed that the SSC would meet next
week to take a call on the issue. The State is yet to have a full-fledged
One militant of newly formed militant group ARA,
identified as Rohit M. Sangma alias Gettingson Sangma of Karbi
Anglong District, Assam, was arrested after an encounter during
Police checking at Thapa Darenchi village in North Garo Hills
District. He is one of the close aids of the leader of the militant
group William A. Sangma.
An official source of IB said that the ULFA-I
and GNLA have planned to carry major explosions and attack on
security forces in Lower Assam and Garo hills. The IB source further
said that, the outfit groups plan to use professional criminals
and carriers to carry explosives and to plant IED and bombs. After
intercepting telephonic conversation between two top leaders of
ULFA-I and GNLA, IB officials managed to find out the planning
of the outfits. The source said that, IB has already informed
the UHM, Police and Home Departments of both States and other
security agencies about the militants plan.
In a statement, the HNLC militant denied the surrender
option of the State Government and said that it will continue
'the struggle'. In the statement, the 'publicity secretary' of
HNLC, Sainkupar Nongtraw, said that the 'council' has its own
principles and till today they are receiving annual support in
terms of finance, arms and ammunitions from 'anti-India countries'
which when compared is far greater than the rehabilitation packages
offered by CM Mukul Sangma.
The militant 'leader' William Sangma, who was
planning to float a new outfit called UANF, managed to escape
along with three others, leaving his vehicle behind during a Police
check in North Garo Hills District.
The 'foreign secretary' of GNLA, identified as
Briyan R. Marak alias Millam (40) surrendered before Police
without any arms at Baghmara in South Garo Hills District. According
to Police, Briyan played a key part in forging close ties with
the ULFA-I, NDFB and NSCN-U in Bangladesh. Briyan R. Marak's surrender
has come as another body blow for the elusive GNLA 'c-in-c' Sohan
D. Shira after scores of senior leaders and cadres surrendered
in the past one year. The GNLA 'c-in-c' is learnt to be with a
handful (approximately 20) cadres and well armed, stated another
source in the Police headquarters.
Meghalaya CM Dr Mukul Sangma refuted claims by
the opposition that his Government was yet to pay rehabilitation
package to cadres of the disbanded ANVC and its splinter group
ANVC-B. While replying during a debate, he informed that rehabilitation
packages were disbursed to 363 out of the 367 cadres of the AVCB
and 139 cadres of the disbanded ANVC-B. He informed the House
that three of the members of the disbanded ANVC members did not
avail the rehabilitation package while one expired.
Dr Sangma also informed that out of the 139 members
of the disbanded ANVC-B only 11 have been able to take advantage
of the rehabilitation package while 53 cadres their cases were
sent for minor corrections and 74 cadres were yet to submit details
of the bank accounts.
SFs arrested a militant of a newly formed militant
group named ARA, identified as Sengman Ch. Marak alias
Miksal alias Bacheng from Alda Cheran village near Songsak in
East Garo Hills District. A US-made M-4 automatic rifle with ammunition,
which allegedly belonged to William A. Sangma, a militant leader
and wanted criminal who had escaped from Mendipathar Police Station
in 2014, was recovered from his possession.
SFs arrested a militant of a newly formed militant
group named ARA, identified as Sengman Ch. Marak alias Miksal
alias Bacheng from Alda Cheran village near Songsak in East Garo
Hills District. A US-made M-4 automatic rifle with ammunition,
which allegedly belonged to William A. Sangma, a militant leader
and wanted criminal who had escaped from Mendipathar Police Station
in 2014, was recovered from his possession.
Police team arrested three extortionists, identified
as Tengsrang Ch Momin (22), Mantu Ch Momin (35) and Suhrab Miah
(35) from Ampati in South West Garo Hills District. According
to the Police they were involved in extorting money from businessmen
in the name of GNLA.
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh reviewed the
security situation in the Northeastern States of India and directed
officials to enhance vigil along the international borders in
the region. During the hour long meeting, the Home Minister was
given a detailed presentation on the prevailing situation in the
Northeast, especially militancy in the region. Singh was also
told about the steps taken to ensure peace, especially in Assam,
Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland and Manipur, the four states considered
to be affected by insurgency, official sources added.
The MoS for Home Affairs clarified that surrendered
militants without any criminal cases pending against them can
contest in elections. Kiren Rijiju on the issue further informed
that at least 15,314 militants have surrendered under the surrender-cum-rehabilitation
policy for the northeastern region. Altogether, 235 individuals
are still undergoing rehabilitation under the Surrender-cum-Rehabilitation
Scheme as of financial year 2016-17.
One senior militant belonging to AMEF, identified
as Raksim Ch Momin alias Arikam (22) surrendered before
Police and Church leaders at Williamnagar in East Garo Hills District.
The militant was a cadre of GNLA earlier and later formed the
ASAK along with another militant Reding T Sangma. He surrendered
in 2014. But he managed to escape from Police custody and joined
AMEF in 2015.
An ASAK militant, identified as Komol Ch Marak,
surrendered before BSF authorities at Dobasipara in Tura in West
Garo Hills District.
IG of BSF (Meghalaya Frontier) P.K Dubey, during
his interaction with media persons, referring to the recent terrorist
raid in Sylhet (Bangladesh) said that any incident that happens
near the border is always a threat. P.K Dubey said that neo-JMB
is acting on the agenda of IS. Reacting to a query if sealing
of Indo-Bangla border was a feasible solution, Dubey pointed out
that there were plans to seal the Indo-Bangla and Indo-Pakistan
borders and since the Supreme Court has given a deadline of 2019
to complete the fencing along the Indo-Bangla border, the BSF
is coordinating with the State government in this regard.
In a fresh attempt to nudge Myanmar to launch
a flush out operation against the militants of the Northeast,
India reduced the allotment to its Aid to Myanmar programme significantly
and allocated INR 225 crore only this Year (2017-18). In the previous
year, (i.e. in 2016-17) India sanctioned INR 400 crore to Myanmar
but the indifferent attitude of Myanmar over the issue of Northeastern
militant groups disappointed India and this time India has clearly
shown its displeasure over the issue, claims the report.
The Meghalaya DGP Swaraj Bir Singh said that fresh
induction of SF-10 will add new impetus to the counter-insurgency
operations in Garo Hills Districts to wipe out the GNLA. He said,
"The SF-10 stand out because of the specialized training modules
aimed at combating militancy". "They are highly motivated and
can stay long in advanced and remote areas frequented by militants",
stated Singh. He referred to the success in virtually wiping out
the GNLA militants in four districts of Garo Hills as a glaring
illustration. Besides gunning more than a dozen militants and
the combat pressure that forced more than 150 GNLA cadres to surrender
in the past one year (2016), the DGP further added while the pursuits
is on in last remaining bastions of a motley group of 18-20 GNLA
cadres, the passing out of the second batch of SF-10 in two months
time will provide more thrust on the counter insurgency operations
in Garo Hills.
Authoritative security sources in the Union Home
Ministry claimed that China has roped in militant groups of North
East to launch a proxy war against India. The source further claimed
that the recent statement of ULFA-I, on March 28, against the
visit of Dalai Lama in Assam was dictated by China. Also, asserting
that China was not interested in organizational strength of ULFA-I,
the security sources said that China intends to intensify its
proxy war against India in the North East through the separatist
Replying to a question by MP Krupal Balaji Tumane,
Union Minister of State for Home Hansraj Gangaram Ahir revealed
that insurgent activities in the Northeast along the Indo-Myanmar
border saw an increase compared to the Indo-Bangladesh border
in the last three years. According to the report, during the period
from 2015 to March 31, 2017, terror activities along Indo-Myanmar
border increased alarmingly in view of insurgents groups shifting
their bases from Bangladesh to territories within Myanmar and
China. According to the Minister, during this period, 10 encounters
took place in three North Eastern States - Assam, Meghalaya and
Tripura along the Indo-Bangladesh border. Even though no casualties
were reported in these encounters, a total of 11 suspected rebels
were arrested. In Assam along the Indo-Bangla border, three encounters
were reported and four militants arrested in 2015. No such incident
was however reported in Assam along the Indo-Bangla border in
2016-17. On the other hand, the Indo-Myanmar border has been witnessing
steady rise in insurgent activities during the period with as
many as 206 encounters reported between militants and security
personnel spread across four Northeastern States Arunachal Pradesh,
Nagaland, Manipur and Mizoram. While 18 security personnel lost
their lives, 32 insurgents were killed in these encounters. A
total 337 rebels were arrested from the international border in
the four States during this period. Among the four Northeastern
States sharing Myanmar border, maximum number of encounters took
place in Arunachal Pradesh. As many as 81 encounters were reported
in that State where three security personnel and 13 militants
were killed. During this period, 114 suspected insurgents were
arrested. Even in 2017, 13 encounter cases have been reported
till March in Arunachal along the border with Myanmar. Union Minister
Ahir said the Central Government of India in tandem with Northeastern
State Governments has adopted a multi-pronged approach to contain
cross-border infiltration. This includes strengthening of border
management, multi-tiered deployment along the international border
and Line of Control, synergizing intelligence flow to check infiltration
and pro-active action against terrorists.
An angry mob of villagers lynched an unidentified
Bangladeshi citizen, who allegedly crossed over to India over
the suspicions of criminal activities, near Bamonpara village
in Dalu in West Garo Hills District. Despite the strict vigil
being by the BSF, the entire stretch of the border in West Garo
Hills District has seen sporadic incidents of dacoity committed
by Bangladeshi criminals in collusion with Indian thugs.
The joint secretary, Union Home Ministry, in charge
of the North East, Satyendra Garg said that the peace pact that
was signed by the State and the Central governments with two disbanded
rebel groups, ANVC and ANVC-B, will be reviewed in May or June
this year (2017). The peace agreement was signed by the Central
Government of India, the State Government, ANVC and ANVC-B in
Delhi on September 24, 2014.
Replying to the questions of the reporters Satyendra
Garg said that the Central Government of India will not initiate
peace talks with any militant outfit at the moment in Meghalaya.
He said that for the Centre to come to the talks table, the groups
have to first abjure violence and abide by the Constitution. The
GNLA, and the HNLC, had earlier expressed their willingness to
come forward for peace talks with the Government.
The 'former chairman' Bernard Rimpu N Marak of
ANVC-B, in a statement, blamed the State Government for the failure
of the 'Agreed Text of Settlement' signed in 2014 and threatened
that if it is not implemented by September 24, the agreement will
be "burned publicly".
The annual report of the UMHA for 2016-17 revealed
that the security situation in the Northeast had "improved substantially"
during the previous year where insurgency-related incidents decreased
by more than 15 per cent compared to 2015. "The security situation
in the northeastern states, which has remained complex for quite
some time because of diverse demands of ethnic groups and various
militant outfits, improved substantially in 2016.
The number of insurgency-related incidents in
the region decreased by more than 15 per cent compared to 2015,"
the report said. In 2015, while there were 574 insurgency-related
incidents, the corresponding figure in 2016 was 484. The report
also said 2016 witnessed the "lowest number" of insurgency incidents
since 1997. While casualties among SFs in the region declined
from 46 (2015) to 17 (2016), civilian casualties declined in all
states except Assam where it increased from 9 in 2015 to 29 in
2016. The report noted that while Sikkim, Mizoram and Tripura
had no insurgency-related violence in 2016, there was considerable
decline in incidents in Meghalaya (44 per cent) and Nagaland (43
per cent) compared to 2015. In 2016, Manipur accounted for about
48 per cent of total violent incidents in the region and Arunachal
Pradesh experienced an increase in violent activities by 38 per
cent, primarily on account of violence by the NSCN-K, the report
stated. In Assam, insurgency-related violence continued to decline
and 2016 witnessed the lowest number of insurgency incidents since
1997, it added. In 2016, Meghalaya witnessed a 44 per cent decline
in the number of violent incidents. While there were 123 incidents
in 2015, the figure declined to 68 in 2016.
The report stated that the number of civilian
casualties decreased by 33 per cent compared to 2015. Further,
while 25 militants were killed in 2015, the figure came down to
15 in 2016. Similarly, only 59 militants were arrested in 2016
compared to 121 in 2015. However, there was no casualty on the
part of security personnel in 2016.
A suspected group of GNLA militants involved in
an incident of assaulting of a 14-year-old school boy at Dambuk
Atong village in South Garo Hills District. The militants were
crossing through the Rongara area and met the boy at Dambuk Atong.
They started questioning the teenager about the movement of security
forces. Unhappy with his replies, the rebels beat up the boy leaving
him unconscious. The boy was initially hospitalized at Rongara
health centre and later released.
A group of GNLA militant attacked coal-laden trucks
at Tainang area of NH-62 between Siju and Baghmara, of South Garo
Hills District. The firing damaged three trucks but no casualty
was reported. According to the Police the same group of militant
was involved in the incident of the assaulting the 14-year-old
school boy at Dambuk Atong village in South Garo Hills District.
Six suspected Bangladeshi nationals abducted a
youth, Dajied Syiemlieh, working as a helper of an earth mover,
from Nongjri village in South West Khasi Hills District. South
West Khasi Hills Superintendent of Police H.G. Lyngdoh said that
the Police have launched combing operations in order to trace
the youth. "Since yesterday, we have alerted the BSF to seal the
international border," Lyngdoh said.
In a statement, GNLA denied any involvement in
the recent attack on coal trucks near Rongara in South Garo Hills
District on April 27 and the incident of assaulting a boy at Dambuk
near Rongara on April 25.
Terming the agreement with State Government as
a total failure, 'chairman' of the now disbanded ANVC-B, Bernard
(Rimpu) Marak has threatened to burn copies of the ATS in protest
at the Government's apathy. "The ATS is a total failure. Till
date its implementation has not been monitored properly by the
State Government and is at a standstill ever since it was signed.
There has been very little development due to the Government's
lack of interest in its implementation", said Bernard in a release.
Two persons, as Abdul Kalam and Salseng Sangma,
were arrested with FICN worth INR 132,000 [INR 2,000 denomination]
in West Garo Hills District. All the FICN notes were of "very
high quality and only experts could differentiate", said West
Garo Hills SP Raghvendra Kumar. Police are looking for other members
of the gang. "This is supposedly a big gang of international smugglers
who source their FICN from across the international border mostly
through Mankachar," he said. The Police said the gang has circulated
around INR 3-4 million in Garo Hills. The gang's modus operandi
is to mix FICN into the system at local markets and through other
DGP, S B Singh, said that, there will be no negotiations
with militant outfits in Meghalaya and counter insurgency operations
in the Garo Hills against outlawed GNLA would continue. "Our stand
is that there will be no negotiations with any group as also made
clear by the Union Ministry of Home Affairs joint secretary in
charge of North East," Singh said. "GNLA are cornered. They have
been driven out of Durama Hills and they are on the run," he said
adding there would be no negotiation with the outlawed militant
outfits responsible for killing, abduction and terrorizing the
western parts of the State since late 2010.
One militant of GNLA, identified as Bikarias
N. Marak alias Bilkam Bordoloi (29), surrendered before Police
church leaders in North Garo Hills District.
The HC of Meghalaya refused to cancel the bail
granted to GNLA 'chairman' Champion Sangma by the Sessions Court.
BSF DG K.K Sharma said that Bangladesh is no longer
a safe haven for Indian insurgent groups. Sharma, who was addressing
the media at the 8th annual medical conference at the BSF headquarters
in the Shillong, said the few training camps and hideouts set
up by Indian rebel groups, like HNLC and ULFA, in the neighbouring
country have been destroyed by the Border Guards Bangladesh. On
border fencing in the State, Sharma said BSF has taken up the
land acquisition issue with the State Government. At the same
time, he said the border sentinels will introduce high-end technology
to detect intruders. "BSF is in the process of filling up the
gaps along the border by technological solutions - installing
intruder detection alert system that would go a long way in detecting
A self-styled "major of the 1996 batch" of the
HNLC, Combart Syad, surrendered himself before the SP of East
Khasi Hills. Syad (36) is a resident of Karimganj in Assam. He
was a trainer in HNLC camps, sources said. Syad was not carrying
State Police suspect that the 18-year-old labourer,
Dajied Syiemlieh, who was abducted on April 28 from Nongjri in
South West Khasi Hills District, may have been taken to Bangladesh
by the mixed group of miscreants. DGP SB Singh said the information
with the Police is that the worker is in Bangladesh. He said the
abduction was the handiwork of a mixed group of miscreants from
Bangladesh, who have connections in South West Khasi Hills. The
DGP said BSF is coordinating with the Police to rescue the labourer.
A hardcore GNLA militant, Marus Ch Sangma (26)
alias Dotling alias Rajesh, surrendered before the
20th Battalion of BSF based at Dobasipara near Tura in West Garo
Hills District. Marus Ch Sangma was also associated with the ANVC-B
till 2014. He also had links with trans-border criminals from
Bangladesh operating in South Garo Hills District.
SFs are upping their ante as reports indicate
that elusive GNLA 'c-in-c' Sohan D. Shira has started recruiting
cadres to strengthen his fledging group. In this context, State
DGP, S.B Singh said, "After large scale surrender of his cadres
and commanders he was left with around 20 men. He is desperate
to strengthen his group and is trying to recruit and arm more
cadres but our security teams are also on the lookout for him".
Police sources said Sohan Shira has moved his operations from
the Durama Hills across Williamnagar into the densely forested
area of Rongsu and the Balpakram National Park region of South
Garo Hills to avoid detection by SFs.
The Minister in charge of District Council Affairs,
Prestone Tynsong, said the Centre is in the process of amending
the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution so that the number of members
in the GHADC can be increased to 40. The GHADC currently has 30
members. "We are hopeful that the Union Cabinet will soon decide
on the matter after which it will be taken to Parliament," he
The BSF has stepped up its vigil along the unfenced
boundaries in East Khasi Hills and Jaintia Hills. According to
an unnamed BSF official the tightening of security follows a complaint
by the Lawbah border area circle of the KSU. The KSU unit had
complained to the DIG and area commandant of BSF about "rampant
infiltration of Bangladeshi immigrants" through Shella, Nongtrai
and Ryngkhu areas. BSF officials said some Indian villagers are
employing Bangladeshi workers in betel nut plantation and farming.
They stressed on the need for speeding up border fencing to curb
infiltration and smuggling of contraband. A large area of the
Indo-Bangla border in Meghalaya is yet to be fenced due to opposition
from the Co-ordination Committee on International Border and local
residents who are demanding that the fencing be undertaken from
zero line and not 150 yards inside the Indian Territory.
Reviewing the security situation in the Northeast
with chief secretaries and DGPs of the region in New Delhi, Union
Home Minister Rajnath Singh described religious radicalisation
as a serious security threat and said if not checked in time;
it could lead to terrorism. He also expressed concern over the
proliferation of illegal arms in the region and asked the Police
chiefs to launch organised campaigns against arms smugglers.