The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Saturday arrested a 51-year-old man from the hill district of Churachandpur in a case related to a transnational conspiracy by terror outfits based in Myanmar and Bangladesh to “wage war” against the Government of India by exploiting the current ethnic unrest in Manipur.
The accused has been identified as Seiminlun Gangte. The case was registered suo moto by the NIA on July 19 at New Delhi.
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His wife Mangshi Seiminlun told The Hindu that her husband was arrested from Phuoljang area. “Before the unrest, he used to teach English at a private school in Kwakta. After the violence began in May, he was working at a godown in Churachandpur and used to ferry goods for the proprietor Kamaluddin, who lives in Kwakta,” she said.
Manipur Police said he is one of the prime accused in the Kwakta bomb blast case. On June 21, three civilians were injured when an explosion took place in an SUV parked at Kwakta in Bishnupur.
While the hill district of Churachandpur is dominated by the Kuki-Zo community, Bishnupur in the valley is Meitei-dominated. The inter-district boundary or the “buffer zone” has seen frequent clashes between the two communities since violence erupted in the State on May 3. At least 175 people have been killed in Manipur since then. Kwakta is dominated by Meitei Pangals or Muslims.
The NIA said that its investigation has revealed that militant groups based in Myanmar and Bangladesh have entered into a conspiracy with a section of militant leaders in India to indulge in violence with an intention to drive a wedge between different ethnic groups and to wage war against the Government of India. “And for this purpose, the aforementioned leadership have been providing funds to procure arms, ammunition and other types of terrorist hardware which are being sourced both, from across the border, as well as from other terrorist outfits active in northeastern States of India to stoke the current ethnic strife in Manipur,” it alleged.
The accused was brought to Delhi after his arrest and will be produced before the jurisdictional court.
In the document submitted by the NIA to the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) seeking permission to fly to Delhi from Imphal airport, the agency said that the case is “related to conspiracy by Chin-Kuki-Mizo militant groups with other Chin-Kuki-Mizo militants based in Myanmar and Bangladesh to indulge in violence by undertaking terrorist strikes with an intention to create a separate State inhabited by the Chin-Kuku Mizo tribes by carving out territories from India, Bangladesh and Myanmar and to wage a war against Government of India.”
Earlier, on September 23, the NIA arrested M. Anand Singh, from Imphal.
The agency alleged that Myanmar-based leaders of insurgent groups and proscribed terrorist organisations were recruiting over ground workers, cadre, and sympathisers to augment their strength for carrying out attacks on security forces and opponent ethnic groups.
“And for this purpose, the aforementioned leadership are collecting arms, ammunition and explosives by unlawful means, including plunder and pillage of government facilities and resources,” the NIA had said. After the accused was arrested by the police first on September 16, high drama was witnessed in Imphal with several protestors storming the Porompat police station to seek his release. Police had said that Singh was among five persons who were arrested with sophisticated weapons. The men were in police uniform when they were arrested.