Militants kidnap three Tripura villagers


Agartala : Militants from the outlawed National Liberation Front of Tripura (NLFT) are demanding a ransom of Rs.56,000 for three tribals they had abducted two days ago, police said here Friday.

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The separatist guerrillas had Wednesday kidnapped six people from Raishabari village in Dhalai district, 180 km from here, but subsequently released three of them. The members of the village, police said, had not been paying the group the regular extortion money for the last six years.

“The six tribal villagers from Raishabari village under Dhalai district went to Bangladesh to collect dry fish Wednesday. When they were coming back to their village, the NLFT rebels abducted them,” said Deputy Inspector General Nepal Das.

“The ultras later released three of the six villagers,” Das told IANS, adding that the terrorists had demanded Rs.56,000 as ransom as well as the extortion money from the villagers, belonging to the Chakma tribe.

Senior police officials have rushed to supervise operations to rescue the hostages.

Tripura shares an 856 km border with Bangladesh, part of which is porous, riverine and unfenced and is prone to frequent infiltration and occasional skirmishes.

“If there was no political support to the militant outfits, the insurgency problems could have been tackled more easily,” Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar said Friday after a meeting with senior army officer Lt Gen N.K. Singh.

“In the internal security meeting held in New Delhi last month (Aug 17), the chief ministers of northeastern states have demanded the deployment of counter insurgency trained paramilitary Assam Rifles to provide security to the ongoing railway works in the region.

“In view of the terrorism, the works of several railway ventures, declared as national projects, have been badly affected in the region, comprising eight states,” Sarkar told reporters.