Calcutta, Sept. 23: Sleuths stationed across the Northeast have tracked down the person who had arranged to send 25,000 AK-47 bullets in a truck to militants in Kashmir.
The breakthrough came nearly a month after the detective department seized the consignment from the truck parked in the city’s port area.
Soumen Mitra, the department’s deputy commissioner of police, today said that a member of the Meghalaya-based militant outfit, Achik National Volunteer Council (ANVC), had bought the truck.
Sirush Momin, he said, had made the modification in the driver’s cabin to hide the bullets in a secret chamber.
“The truck had changed many hands before Sirush Momin, a member of ANVC, bought it — in the name of a close relative, Kearston Momin — from a coal merchant, Dilwar Hussein, of Goalpara in Assam, for Rs 2.7 lakh,” Mitra said.
“Sirush did not face a problem when he tried to send the consignment (in the truck) loaded with chatais as he owned a contractor trader’s license,” he added.
Sirush, of East Garo Hills in Meghalaya, is the son of the first wife of a notorious local timber smuggler called Iman Ali.
He joined the ANVC after it was founded in 1995 to fight for a separate Garoland, comprising parts of Assam, East and West Garo Hills and Bangladesh.
The original owner of the truck was Mohan Kumar Garg of NS Road, Guwahati. He had bought it with funds from Telco. After clearing all dues to Telco in April 1998, he sold the vehicle to Hussein.
This July, Sirush bought the truck from Hussein.
“The original registration of the truck had an Assam number, AS01E6924. After he (Sirush) purchased the vehicle, he prepared fake registration papers of Nagaland under the fictitious name of Ravinder Singh, a resident of Jammu,” Mitra said.
“Then, by surrendering the fake registration number, NL04A7868, he applied for re-registration at the Meghalaya regional transport office. This number, ML075859, was maintained on the way to Calcutta.”