‘Calm’ Mizoram a Maoist-PLA hub

Guwahati, Nov. 25: The most peaceful state in the Northeast, Mizoram, was allegedly used as a meeting point by Maoists and leaders of the Manipur-based militant outfit People’s Liberation Army (PLA).

The National Investigation Agency (NIA), which is probing the PLA’s anti-national activities, discovered that a meeting was held between the outfit’s leaders and Maoists at Champhai in Mizoram on July 15, 2010.

According to the agency, similar meetings between the outfit and Maoist leaders were also held in Calcutta, Guwahati and Rourkela.

An official source said the militants might have selected Mizoram because of its history of being a peaceful state for more than two decades.

Insurgency in Mizoram had come to an end after the Mizoram Peace Accord was signed in 1986, and since then, the state has remained by and large peaceful.

The NIA said a group of PLA leaders had also imparted arms training to Maoists at Saranda forest in Jharkhand from September 11 to November 20 last year.

The PLA had allegedly trained Maoists in basic military tactics, guerrilla warfare, ambushing and wireless communication skills and a couple of more such training sessions were scheduled for next year.

According to the investigating agency, the self-styled chief of PLA’s external affairs wing, N. Dilip Singh, who was arrested from Paharganj in Delhi on October 1, was one of the main trainers.

Singh joined PLA in 1988 as a “sepoy” and was subsequently promoted to the rank of “captain” in 2009.

“After obtaining necessary permission from the court, Dilip Singh is being brought to Guwahati for interrogation,” the source said.

“The team of NIA officers that is bringing the PLA leader from New Delhi is expected to reach Guwahati tonight and he will be booked in a NIA case (number 1/2011),” the source added.

The NIA has registered the case against PLA at its Guwahati branch under Sections 120 (B), 121 (A) of the IPC and Sections 17, 18, 18-A and 18-B of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act. The case was registered in pursuance of a Union home ministry order dated June 8, 2011.

“The NIA has also learned that Left-wing extremists have paid money to the PLA for acquiring Chinese-made arms, ammunitions and communication devices and also for imparting training to their cadres,” the source said.

The source said Singh and PLA’s self-styled lieutenant, Arun Kumar Singh, were in Delhi to discuss the modalities of providing logistics, arms, ammunitions and communication equipment to the cadres of Maoist groups and for setting up joint training camps of Maoist and PLA cadres in Myanmar.

He said during interrogation, Dilip Singh had told Delhi Police that the Revolutionary People’s Front (RPF) and CPI (Maoist) had signed a joint declaration on October 22, 2008, in which both sides had decided to extend full support to each other in their struggle against a common enemy — the government of India.

The RPF, which is the political wing of PLA, runs a government-in-exile in Myanmar, with Irengbam Chaoren as its “president”.

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