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HNLC says cadre fled with cash

Shillong, Sept. 19: The banned militant group Hynniewtrep National Liberation Council (HNLC) today alleged that its cadre who surrendered yesterday had fled from the outfit’s camp with Rs 17 lakh and an AK-47 rifle.

Last evening, Jingkyrmen Wanniang alias Tom surrendered before BSF deputy-inspector general (Jowai sector) P.C. Sharma along with one pistol, magazine and ammunition. The BSF officials had said that Wanniang’s surrender was the culmination of a “well-planned” strategy by its intelligence team, which established contact with the hardcore militant in Bangladesh and motivated him to lay down arms and join the mainstream.

“The surrendered cadre was not of sound mind and earlier he had met with an accident which had an impact on his thinking abilities. Even the family members of Wanniang are aware of the fact that he was not in a sound state of mind,” HNLC publicity secretary Sainkupar Nongtraw said in a statement issued via email today.

Nongtraw also alleged that Wanniang had escaped from his designated camp with Rs 17 lakh along with an AK-47 rifle, 30 rounds of ammunition and a hand grenade.

“But again revelations made in the media differ. Is this not a matter of surprise as to where the money and the weapons disappeared? Was the money distributed among the security forces?” the HNLC leader asked.

Nongtraw further said it was a matter of “embarrassment”, as the BSF was not even aware when the GNLA chairman Champion R. Sangma was “handed over” to the Indian government.

“The case of surrender is also a ploy and propaganda of BSF to feed lies to the public regarding the council. If the BSF was so honest in its work, then why did it hide the Rs 17 lakh and weapons?” he asked.

Wanniang had joined the outfit in December 2002 and underwent arms training in 2003 at Arsumer camp at Rangamati in Chittagong, Bangladesh. He remained there till 2009 and shifted to Shrimangal area of Moulvibazar district.

He was also closely associated with senior HNLC cadre known as Hep Koit, who is the “area commander” of Dawki area.

The cadre, 30 years of age, hails from Mawpdai village under Mawsynram in East Khasi Hills.