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AANLA rebel held on extortion charge

Golaghat, Feb. 9: A team of Golaghat police led by deputy superintendent of police Budheswar Khaklari today arrested a member of the All Adivasi National Liberation Army (AANLA) from Deberapara in Mariani in Jorhat district, where he has been working as a handyman, on charges of extortion.

An AANLA identity card and two mobile phones were seized from him.

The arrested cadre, identified as Amar Singh Karmakar alias Amar Gogoi, 29, of the ceasefire faction of the AANLA, has been giving extortion threats to ONGC’s gas gathering station 1 at Khorghat, along the Assam-Nagaland border, under Uriamghat police station in Golaghat district.

The matter came to light when A.K. Tiwari, superintendent engineer of ONGC, Jorhat, filed an FIR at Uriamghat police station on January 9 regarding the extortion calls received by them.

Accordingly, the police registered the case and began an investigation.

The extortion calls were made between January 6 and 8 to the landline telephone number of the GGS-1 installation.

They threatened the ONGC officials to pay Rs 5 lakh every year for the next three years and said failure to do so would result in dire consequences.

“Since the calls were made to a landline number, it took some time to trace the call but eventually we are able to do it and arrest the culprit,” Khaklari said.

He said the arrested cadre did not belong to any tea tribe community but changed his surname to Karmakar to operate as an AANLA cadre. At present, there is one designated camp of the AANLA ceasefire faction in Chungajan.

Though AANLA has declared a ceasefire many of its cadres are actively involved in activities like extortion, kidnapping and robbery and many of them have also been arrested in this connection.