GUWAHATI, March 4 � Strong bonding between the militant groups of the North East having bases in Myanmar has become a major cause of concern for the security agencies, while, the hard line faction of the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) and the anti-talk faction of the National Democratic Front of Boroland (NDFB) recently sent small batches of new recruits to the neighbouring country for training in handling of weapons.
Highly placed security sources told The Assam Tribune that in recent times, the militant groups of the North East have become closer to each other in Myanmar in the interest of their own survival and most of the outfits of the region have strong bases in the Taka (Taga) area in the Sagain division of Myanmar. The recent videos of ULFA commander in chief Paresh Baruah along with his supporters, which was released to the media, were shot in the bases of the outfit in Taka, sources added.
Despite repeated assurances to the Government of India, the Government of Myanmar is yet to launch sustained operations against the militants using the territory of the country as safe haven. However, to increase vigil along the more than 1600 kilometre international boundary, the Government of India has taken a decision to deploy Border Security Force (BSF) personnel along the border with Myanmar. But the deployment will take some time as new battalions of the force are being raised and creation of necessary infrastructure will also take some time.
Sources said that the hard line faction of the ULFA, headed by Paresh Baruah has started recruiting new cadres. Though large scale recruitments were not noticed from any part of Assam, it is a fact that small groups of new recruits were sent to the bases in Myanmar for training in recent times, sources added.
The same is the case with the anti-talk faction of the NDFB as the outfit is also sending the new recruits to Myanmar, where the outfit has set up bases along with Manipur based outfit KYKL. Though the anti-talk faction of the NDFB has sent feelers to the Government expressing willingness for talks, the outfit has also initiated steps for augmenting its armoury, which is a matter of concern for the security forces. The security agencies managed to intercept some communications between the members of the outfit in recent times and there were instances when the field level commanders requested their leaders staying in Bangladesh and Myanmar to send weapons including AK series rifles. The leaders also asked the field level leaders to send money for procurement of weapons. Though the security forces are not apprehending large scale violence by the NDFB in near future, the possibility of members of the outfit indulging in kidnappings and extortions cannot be ruled out in the wake of the recent communications.
Sources also revealed that the vice chairman of the anti-talk faction of the NDFB, G Rifikhang, who is heading the outfit after the arrest of Ranjan Daimary, is still believed to be in Bangladesh, while, the IK Songbijit, the Army chief of the outfit is now near Myanmar-China border and security agencies are of the view that he also visited China recently.