North Cachar Hills Autonomous Council chief arrested for alleged links with militant group

GUWAHATI: Special Task Force commandos on Saturday arrested Mohit Hojai, chief executive member (CEM) of the North Cachar Hills Autonomous Council (NCHAC) in Assam for alleged links with the militant outfit, Dima Halam Daogah (Jewel faction).
Mr. Hojai earlier refuted the charge as a political conspiracy to malign him.
Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi told journalists here that he had ordered the arrest of Mr. Hojai and now it was for the police to establish the charge
Mr. Hojai, who heads the tribal council that is vested with powers under the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution, went into hibernation after the police recovered Rs. 1 crore, meant for an arms deal by DHD (Jewel), from the possession of two activists of the outfit near the Assam-Meghalaya border on April 2. Two pistols and three DHD (Jewel) letter pads were also seized from them.
Earlier, the security agencies received an input that DHD (Jewel) had demanded Rs 1.5 crore from Mr. Hojai towards payment for an arms consignment already received by the outfit. The police alleged that one of the arrested DHD activists confessed that the money was brought from Mr. Hojai’s residence.
The Chief Minister said more security forces would be sent to the hill district to curb the insurgent activities.
The DHD (Jewel) has lately been creating havoc there, targeting trains and railway staff, and abducting contractors, engineers and workers engaged in railway gauge conversion. On the other hand, a total 17 incidents of extremist attacks on Dimasa and Zeme Naga villages of the hill district since March 18 has so far claimed 24 lives. Altogether 1658 people belonging to both Dimasa and Zeme Naga tribes are now taking shelter in six relief camps opened by the administration after their houses have been set ablaze by the militants.
The Chief Minister said that the his government would consider holding peace talks with the DHD(Jewel) only if the outfit abjured violence and surrendered their arms.
He said that even though there were a large number of security forces present in the hill district, they had not been able to reach the destinations in time in their operation against the militants due to non-existence of proper roads.