Shillong, Aug. 29: Meghalaya police are not ruling out the role of the breakaway faction of A’chik National Volunteer Council (ANVC) in the killing of three youths in the Garo hills region.
The three bodies were recovered yesterday by police officers and a magistrate who visited the spot near Oragitok village under Tura police station following information provided by the nokma of the village. Oragitok is about 20km from Tura, along the border of East and West Garo Hills. Local residents said the bodies were spotted the previous evening.
Meghalaya inspector-general of police (operations) G.H.P. Raju today said the youths’ hands were tied at the back and their bodies bore bullet injury marks.
A probe was conducted after which the bodies were brought to Tura civil hospital for post mortem.
Tura police have registered an FIR, No. 202 (8) 14 U/S 120(B), 364/302/201 IPC and read with Section 27 (3) of the Arms Act. Investigations are on.
Raju said the election identity card of one the deceased established his identity as Grindar T. Sangma, 25, a resident of Samanda Metapgre.
Sangma was allegedly an ANVC (B) cadre and was wanted in a murder case under Williamnagar police station.
Tura police suspect some ANVC (B) cadres may be behind the killing of the youths as the group is in the process of weeding out renegade elements opposed to the leadership and style of functioning of ANVC (B) chairman Bernard N. Marak alias Rimpu Marak, Raju said.
He said director-general of police Peter James Pyngrope Hanaman has directed the state CID to take up the case.
In a statement issued today, ANVC (B) political secretary Doang D. Shira alleged that the incident was a cold-blooded murder and a fake encounter.
“We urge the home minister to take stringent action against those involved in the killing, else we will be compelled to take law in our own hands. We have cooperated and abided by the law until this day, but we will not tolerate killing of our cadres anymore,” Shira said.
He alleged that the three youths were going home on a bike when they were picked up at Rongram in West Garo Hills. He said they “knew” of it but were “helpless”.
“They (the youths) were later taken to Oragitok in a public vehicle and shot there,” Shira alleged.