Tura, Aug. 6: Two GNLA militants, who claim to operate “independently”, were arrested for planning to extort money from businessmen in Tura and procure weapons from neighbouring Assam.
One of them, Sengsan R. Marak, 23, was intercepted by police when he and his female companion were boarding a commercial vehicle at Chandmari bus stop here this afternoon.
Police said Marak, a resident of Resubelpara town in North Garo Hills district, was the deputy area commander of Dalu-Purakhasia region and had undergone training in jungle camps in May last year.
The police seized a sophisticated automatic pistol with a round of live ammunition, GNLA letter pads, mobile phones and a wireless communication handset from them. Based on his statement during interrogation, another cadre, Senton K. Marak, 21, also from Resubelpara, was picked up from a rented house in Janga locality of Tura.
“They have confessed that they had planned to serve a series of demand notes on traders and businessmen of Tura. They were also planning to procure arms from Assam through a dealer and the arrested militant was leaving for the neighbouring state when we caught him,” said district police chief Mukesh K. Singh.
The militants planned to bring in more weapons from Assam after extorting a substantial amount of cash from traders of Tura, he added.
The two arrested cadres are a part of a larger gang of militants who walked out of the GNLA with arms and ammunition and have begun operating on their own. They have so far not given a new name and continue to go about in the name of the GNLA claiming that they remain part of the same outfit but operate “independently” because of “differences” with its chief, Sohan D. Shira.