Jorhat, Dec. 17: Abducted Assam small tea grower Pradip More and his associate, Chandrapal Sharma, were rescued during a army-police joint operation from a remote hilltop under Namsai police station in Arunachal Pradesh’s Lohit district.
Namsai police station officer-in-charge Ratan Nath told The Telegraph that the operation launched by troops of the 12th Assam Regiment and Namsai police three days ago yielded results today as the kidnapped duo were rescued from a hideout in Khainala area.
Nath said the duo were abducted by rebels of the Paresh Barua group of Ulfa and the Arunachal-based United People’s Democratic Front (UPDF) and were kept in a makeshift camp.
He said the three rebels guarding the duo — Devata Moran alias Indrajit Neog and two UPDF cadres — managed to flee before the forces reached the site.
Nath said the duo had been brought to Namsai for medical check-up and were in good health, though very tired and weak. He denied payment of any ransom to the kidnappers by the family members.
Pradip More, a small tea grower, and his associate Chandrapal Sharma, hailing from Naoholia near Duliajan in Dibrugarh district of Assam were kidnapped by a group of armed men from Lekang area under Namsai police station on December 1 when they were returning home from their tea plantation in Namsai. The kidnappers, who had allegedly demanded a ransom, released Pradip’s brother Vinod.
Police sources in Upper Assam said of late the Ulfa had been operating in Arunachal Pradesh districts bordering Assam with the support from UPDF, an Arunachal-based armed outfit formed in June last year under the leadership of self-styled commander-in-chief Sumona Munlang. The outfit is demanding formation of an autonomous district council comprising portions of Lohit and Changlang districts of Arunachal.