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Rag-tag criminal gang behind GNLA revive claims busted in Garo Hills

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Tura, March 16: Three men who created a social media page claiming to revive the defunct GNLA outfit and calling themselves as “GNLA-R “Regroup” have been nabbed by Garo Hills police on Saturday. The arrested trio are said to be petty criminals involved in extortion, police sources said.

A Facebook post was uploaded on February 22nd by one user calling himself as Goera Pantora Sangma and claiming to be the new chairman of the GNLA-R with its headquarters in Tura.

Police began probing the claims and soon identified three men who were picked up from different parts of Garo Hills by police from West and north Garo Hills districts.

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It was during interrogation that they confessed to creating the Facebook page of “Goera Pantora” and also uploading the press release.

The arrested men have been identified as Sengsrang N Marak, Thosengcheba A Sangma and Chijang A Sangma.

From their possession police recovered mobile phones with sim cards, a laptop, a booklet containing 82 numbers of pamphlets as well as 6 numbers of pamphlets in the name of All Garo Hills Merchants Association.

The announcement of the regrouping of the once dreaded GNLA outfit had led to concern among a section of the people of Garo Hills and prompted police to go into an overdrive to investigate the claims.

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But a section of former police officials who had been heavily involved in counter-insurgency operations during the heydays of the GNLA sounded skeptical about the return to militancy given the changed scenario in Garo Hills and the success of the state police in wiping out the outfit.

“The jungles of Garo Hills have been overrun by our SF-10 commandos and every entry and exit areas used by the militants have long been mapped. There is hardly any place left to hide and our forces have more than doubled in the state, so the likelihood of a new militant group emerging is impossible,” informed a senior IPS officer who spoke on condition of anonymity and was active in GNLA operations.

“It appears to be a few disgruntled persons keen to make quick and easy money with the use of a militant name and collecting extortion money,” quipped the officer.

Read: Election Commission to come down heavily on spread of Fake News in Media

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