Meghalaya on alert after rebel threat

July 17th, 2011 - 10:46 pm ICT by IANS  

Shillong, July 17 (IANS) Security forces were put on high alert in Meghalaya Sunday after Garo National Liberation Army (GNLA) rebels threatened to carry out serial blasts across the state, police said.

The rebels said they will bomb places like Bara Bazaar, Police Bazaar, Tura market and others if the government did not withdraw central forces from Garo Hills.

GNLA’s threat came after two units of Combat Battalion for Resolute Action (CoBRA) commandos and five companies of Border Security Force (BSF) troopers were deployed in the Garo Hills region.

“There is no question of withdrawing the troops or suspending our combing operation against them. Instead, we will intensify our operations,” S.K. Jain, the intelligence chief of Meghalaya Police, told IANS.

An alert has been sounded across the state, he added.

The GNLA, one of the five Garo rebel groups, is fighting for a sovereign ‘Garoland’.

More than 10 people, including security personnel, have been killed in the Garo Hills during the last one year by GNLA rebels.

The outfit, headed by police officer-turned-outlaw, Champion R. Sangma, had earlier slapped extortion demands ranging from Rs.5 lakh to Rs.1 crore on government officials, ministers, legislators and businessmen.

The Garo Hills region is being used as a safe haven for various northeast-based militant groups.

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