|The arms recovered from the arrested ANVC-B cadres. Picture by UB Photos
Shillong, July 27: The breakaway faction of the A’chik National Volunteers Council (ANVC) today denied its involvement in the alleged kill-ing of two migrant labourers in Meghalaya’s West Garo Hi-lls and termed the arrest of its cadres as a “big conspiracy”.
Yesterday, West Garo Hills police had raided the outfit’s supposed camp at Edenbari, about 7km from the district headquarters Tura, where 24 cadres were picked up. Arms were also recovered from the site. The police had suspected the outfit’s involvement in the recent killing of two migrant labourers.
According to police, of the 24 cadres arrested, five have been sent to police custody while the rest were sent to 14 days’ judicial custody.
“Our cadres were not involved in any killing. If the police had any evidence, they should have come out officially. They should substantiate their claim with factual evidence. Attacking and arresting the cadres is a big conspiracy, which aims to push away the ANVC (B) from the final settlement,” the outfit’s “publicity secretary”, Doang D. Shira, said in a statement.
Shira claimed the cadres were residing peacefully when the police “attacked” the camp.
Before the Lok Sabha polls, the Centre had approved the “agreed text for settlement” which was arrived at with the ANVC in January last year. The ANVC (B) was also part of this settlement.
Recently, Meghalaya chief minister Mukul Sangma reminded Union home minister Rajnath Singh on the need to sign the final settlement agreement with the ANVC.
Shira alleged the state government had shown disrespect and insincerity towards the outfit.
“First, we were invited to be part of the pact and then abandoned to be hunted. This was because the ANVC (B) was the key to the mechanism of the final settlement. ANVC leaders would agree that the entire draft on which the final text of settlement was agreed was drafted by Rimpu Marak (the ANVC-B chairman) and not by ANVC leaders,” he claimed.
He also said there is “confusion” between the ANVC and the Congress leaders on who would play the vital role in the “interim government” supposed to follow the signing of the memorandum of settlement (MoS).
“This has triggered in secret operations to bring down the strength of our organisation, which led to the rise of splinter groups. This is totally selfish as some people are solely after fame and power,” Shira said.
Moreover, he alleged that ANVC cadres with the backing of the police are hunting down ANVC (B) cadres.
“Now, they have created a situation in Tura to cover up the core ANVC-Congress conspiracy, which aims to run our very own autonomous institution. The government has failed in its commitment in protecting its own subjects and is creating a chaotic situation in Garo hills,” Shira said.