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Police internal memo leak leads panic over GNLA regrouping

First Published: 13th May, 2023 16:59 IST

According to a Meghalaya Police note, at least 500 youth have been recruited and are being sent to Nagaland and Burma for training

Biplab Kr Dey

Tura, May 13: An internal memo by a DSP ranked police officer in West Garo Hills, that was leaked and surfaced online has led to massive panic in the Garo Hills region. The internal memo, which was only meant for circulation between officers of the police force, had claimed that the dreaded Garo National Liberation Army (GNLA) was regrouping and was on a recruitment drive in the entire region to once become a force to reckon with.

The memo is dated May 11 and was meant for circulation in all police stations of the district with officers being asked to check on the authenticity of the ‘source information’ provided by one of the former members of the outfit.

The memo stated that input was received of the GNLA, which has remained dormant for many years were regrouping again and meetings were being conducted in many areas including Jadigittim and Nongalbibra (SGH), Shallang (WKH) to encourage youths to join the GNLA.

The memo added that as many as 500 youths from the various districts of Garo Hills had joined the outfit and had been sent to countries like Myanmar and in Nagaland for basic training. It also claimed that various big businessmen, who were close associates of the GNLA earlier, were aiding the outfit to regroup.

Further the memo requested all police stations to verify the authenticity of the information provided by the source while asking the police and intelligence to closely monitor the movement of surrendered cadres, known business associates, over ground workers of the outfit as well as sympathizers to see if the inputs held any water.

All PS’ have also been asked to intensify CI – Ops, raids, mobile patrolling, area domination, foot patrolling on a regular basis to deny the GNLA any chance of once again becoming a force in the region.

The leaking of the memo has immediately led to panicked residents authorities to seek answers and clarifications on the matter.

A highly placed police source however had a very different take on the matter and felt that an internal inquiry on who leaked the memo needed to be undertaken.

“Our officers or whoever leaked this memo needs to be questioned. This is an internal memo meant to check the authenticity of source information that has been provided. It is a claim that has been made and reality until it can be proven otherwise. The situation that has now been created is one of panic which can be used by criminal elements to extort in the name of the outfit. These kinds of leaks need to stop. It is a given that we need to be vigilant and ensure the dark days for Garo Hills remain behind us,” informed the highly placed source.

Several former GNLA members, when contacted earlier, claimed that they were not going back to the wild and were settled in their lives. As per them, most had settled into businesses and their personal lives and did not wish to return. However there could be some who remain disgruntled with the present set up and look for a way out.

While there can be no question that many former members of the outfit could be looking to once again revive the outfit, 500 new recruits however, seems to be stretching things a bit.

Also Read: Meghalaya: UDP’s Synshar Lyngdoh Thabah wins Sohiong seat

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