Former Assam MLA arrested for trying to float terror group

AK47 and M16 rifles and more than 100 live cartridges were recovered from Hitesh Basumatary’s house

January 07, 2023 09:01 pm | Updated 10:02 pm IST - Guwahati:

File image for representation.

File image for representation. | Photo Credit: K. Pichumani

A former MLA and two others were arrested in Kokrajhar district of western Assam on Saturday for allegedly trying to float an extremist group.

The police recovered an AK47 assault rifle, an M16 rifle and more than 100 live cartridges from Hitesh Basumatary’s house.

Kokrajhar Superintendent of Police Pushpraj Singh said the three persons were being interrogated in police custody. A local court had sent them to five days in police custody.

“We arrested them because they were conspiring to form a new terror organisation,” Mr. Singh said.

Mr. Basumatary won the 2011 Assembly elections from the Chapaguri constituency as a candidate of the Bodoland People’s Front (BPF). He also served as an executive member of the Bodoland Territorial Council, which was renamed Bodoland Territorial Region (BTR) later.

The police said he was associated with the Bodo Liberation Tigers (BLT), a disbanded extremist outfit several top BPF leaders belonged to.

Officials claimed militancy in the BTR had ended after the signing of a tripartite accord among the Centre, the Assam government and Bodo organisations, including all the factions of the disbanded National Democratic Front of Boroland (NDFB) in January 2020.

The BLT and NDFB were bitter rivals at one point in time.

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