Amid ceasefire and negotiations, militants selling weapons.
Guwahati: The northeastern states are extremely worried about the presence of a large number of illegal weapons in to the hands of militant groups engaged in peace talks with the government.
Informing that regional conference of DGPs has decided to launch a coordinated operation to flush out illegal weapons, security sources told this newspaper that it has become the major area of concern for the security forces, as there have been reports of militant outfits holding ceasefire with the government have been found selling their weapons.
Referring to intelligence reports, security sources said that some of the militant outfits have lesser number of cadres than the stock of the sophisticated arms with them.
Asserting that security forces have specific intelligence inputs about cadres selling weapons, security sources said that most of the insurgent groups are on wane and their cadres have been found selling their weapons to poachers and even criminal gangs.
Security sources said that investigation has revealed that poachers have been using sophisticated weapons like AK-47 to kill rhino and it is suspect to have been sold to them by militants.
The ministry of home affairs has also directed the northeastern states to launch a coordinated operation to flush out illegal weapons, security sources said that the use of weapons to intimidate civilians and extort money from various business houses has also become a major area of concern.
Security sources said that the militant outfit — NLFT of Tripura that recently signed a ceasefire agreement with the government, its cadres confessed to have been selling their weapons for their livelihood.
Pointing out that long international borders with five countries make the northeast more vulnerable to security threats, security sources said that these weapons have free movement in Myanmar, which gets it from China.
In fact, Bangladesh’s security apparatus is also worried over the flow of illicit arms into its territory from India’s northeastern states. Most of the illegal weapons procured from auction of arms in China are smuggled to India from Myanmar and through Mizoram it is alleged to have been smuggled to Chittagong Hill Tracts in Bangladesh too, security sources said.
Indicating that a large number of illegal sophisticated weapons in possession of surrendered militants are also up for sell, security sources said that Naga rebel groups may have the highest number of illegal weapons which they have not surrendered or deposited into safe custody under the joint supervision of security forces.