DIPHU/GUWAHATI, June 10 � Acting on a tip-off provided by Karbi Anglong SP Mugdha Jyoti Mahanta, a team led by SDPO (Bokajan) Sankar Rai Medhi today arrested 10 suspected cadres of the United People�s Liberation Army (UPLA) separately from Dimapur in Nagaland and Balipathar in Assam.
The arrested militants include the self-styled deputy commander-in-chief of UPLA, Nikunja Kathar, and its foreign affairs secretary Bali Tisso alias Baliram Rongphar, Assam Police sources said. Police claimed that Nikunja Kathar has confessed to killing the Hamren SP Nitya Nanda Goswami and his PSO during the June 4 encounter.
It may be mentioned here that Nikunja Kathar is a former member of the disbanded United People�s Democratic Solidarity (UPDS), who later joined the lesser known Karbi outfit last year.
The other arrested militants have been identified as Longing Terang, Deputy C-in-C, Mensing Engti, Bijay Sing Timung, Bijay Milik, Bidya Tisso, Joseph Hanse and Bolesri Tisso.
�We received immense help from the Dimapur police, without which the operation probably would not have been successful,� said Bolin Deuri, Additional Superintendent of Police, Karbi Anglong.
Security forces later recovered a huge cache of arms and ammunition from a militant hideout near Baithalangso town of Hamren, which include rocket launchers, Universal machine guns, two self-loading rifles, a 303 rifle, 300 rounds of assorted ammunition, two improvised explosive devices, etc.
Yesterday, a fierce gunbattle took place inside the thick forests near Habang along Meghalaya border when security forces were chasing a group of UPLA militants supposedly involved in the assault on the Hamren SP.
In the encounter, UPLA guerrillas managed to escape from the spot, but there is a strong likelihood of some of the fleeing ultras getting serious injuries in the gunfight, according to C Saloi, DIG, Central Range, Assam Police.