Shillong: Meghalaya Police are on the look out for one of its officers who has allegedly floated a new militant which is carrying out rampant extortion in the state.
Deputy superintendent of police Champion Sangma has been ‘absenting from office’ since over an year now, and police suspect he is the ‘commander-in-chief’ of the nascent Garo National Liberation Army, blamed for serving extortion demands ranging from Rs 5 lakh to Rs 1 crore to businessmen, coal merchants and petrol depot owners, a top police officer said.
“His salary has been stopped. We are trying to trace the missing officer,” he said, adding that an inquiry is on to ascertain his links with the group.
Champion was posted as Assistant Commandant of 2nd Meghalaya Police Battalion at Goeragre in West Garo Hills district, after which he went ‘missing’.
Sohan Shira, a deserter of the Achik National Volunteer Council (ANVC), a rebel group which is under ceasefire and currently engaged in talks with the government, is said to be the second man behind GNLA.
The GNLA, active in East Garo Hills and South Garo Hills districts of the state, has been on an extortion spree over the last few weeks.
Liberation Achik Elite Force (LAEF), another rebel group operating in Garo hills region of the state, was floated by another deserting policeman, Peter Marak, with the help of the NSCN(IM). Marak was later killed in an encounter in August, 2007.