Shillong, May 27: The breakaway faction of the A’chik National Volunteers’ Council (ANVC) has apparently approached the Centre after alleging that the Meghalaya government is focussed on “hunting and wiping out” the outfit.
In a statement, ANVC (B) chairman Rimpu N. Marak claimed that he had not only sent a letter to Shambu Singh, joint secretary (Northeast) in the MHA, but also met him in New Delhi to discuss issues pertaining to the Garo hills.
In the letter, Singh was urged by the breakaway faction to “intervene” for peace and justice in the western part of the state.
“We have been waiting for the finalisation of the camps and schemes for rehabilitation for our cadres. But the state government has not finalised the camps. At present, my cadres are scattered and some deserted the group, floating new organisations due to constant provocation and attempts to implicate them by the state police. Most of my senior members are behind bars and some are still being hunted,” Marak said in the letter to Singh.
The state government is yet to take a decision on the setting up of designated camps for the ANVC (B) cadres. Earlier, it was reported that the camps could be set up in North Garo Hills and along the South West Khasi Hills-West Khasi Hills border.
At the same time, he alleged that the attitude of the state government is focused on “hunting and wiping us out”.
“Out of frustration, some of my cadres left my leadership as I could not provide them with shelter, food and security in spite of being in the peace pact,” he added.
Moreover, he said, in January the police had raided the outfit’s camp and killed four cadres. Marak termed the incident a “fake encounter”.
“The magisterial inquiry pointed out that the cadres were not given enough time to surrender. My cadres were innocent. It was a massacre and a fake encounter, which has violated the rights of our cadres and wounded the faith we had in the government,” he said.
The ANVC (B) leader also brought to Singh’s notice the recent custodial death of Balsan S. Marak. While giving a detailed account of the incident, he sought Singh’s intervention and action on the matter.
“Garos are not aggressive by nature, but circumstances, such as these (Balsan case), have turned us into one. As we march for peace and lasting solution for our people, we would not want our youths to turn into rebels due to lack of good governance and lawlessness,” Marak pointed out.
He also claimed that a discussion on the need to hold talks with the Garo National Liberation Army (GNLA) for “lasting peace” in the Garo hills had featured during the meeting with Singh.