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Militant camp busted, eight rebels bbed in Cachar

Special Correspondent

Silchar, June 7: When extremist groups in north east are in a mode to give up gun-culture and return to normal life, the security and intelligence agencies in the peaceful Barak Valley zone have been jolted by the desperate attempts of former militants to regroup and float Dima Hasao tiol Army (DH). Acting on specific inputs, a joint team of security forces comprising police, CRPF and Assam Rifles first took into custody Pankaj Phukan and his interrogation led to the arrest of Chandra Mohan Rajbangshi, Mrinmoy Choudhury, Junesh Hojai, Parthajit Thaosen alias Ashit Thaosen, Pabitra Batari and Debashis Rajowar from different locations of Cachar district.

 According to a top police officer, these militants who were earlier linked to ULFA, SULFA and DHD joined hands together under the banner of DH with the sole purpose of extortions, kidpping for ransom, loot of ATMs and other crimil activities. Some among them have been involved in crimil activities earlier in Dima Hasao district. Though some arms and ammunitions have been recovered from their possession, police officer is confident of recovering heavy arms and for which they will be subjected to sustained cross-examition.

 One of the militants in police dragnet, Junesh Hojai was earlier arrested by Assam Rifles and one AK 47 rifle was seized from him. He was released on bail and he could hardly forget the taste of extorting money in an easy manner. Others in the custody might have also been lured on this pretext to return to jungle. However, Mrinmoy Choudhury did not have any crimil record. He was trapped into the scent outfit by Pankaj Phukan who hailing from Dhemaji came to work in a tea estate, located on the foothills of Borail in close proximity to Dima Hasao district.  What however took the security and intelligence agencies by surprise was the link of an army intelligence man identified as Binod Langthasa who was arrested from the army cantonment at Masimpur within 12 hours of the arrest of other extremists. The police officer said Langthasa was involved in crimil activities and was virtually hobnobbing with the other militants. All the 8 accused were charge-sheeted under various sections of IPC and Arms Act. They were produced before the CJM Court which remanded them to police custody for 7 days.

 The investigation officer Abhijit Gaurav, IPS, when contacted said, “Further interrogation of all the 8 accused is expected to peel off the beans of the deeper conspiracy and expose their modus operandi. We are definite to reach the bottom of their planning. More heavy arms and ammunitions have been concealed by them.” It has been established that the kingpins of the gang are Junesh Hojai and Pankaj Phukan. After all, whatever has been achieved can well be described as the busting of a militant outfit in the making. From all accounts, a strong message has gone from Cachar police that no militancy can take root in this district.

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Ankur Kalita