Illegal arms trafficking continues to enter Myanmar across Indian and Thai border areas, according to police officials.
Police Brig-General Soe Myaing, in charge of transnational crime investigations, said on August 22 that such illegal trade is going to armed groups. Some come all the way from Cambodia.
“Some neighbouring countries are selling the weapons illegally to armed groups. We also know that weapons from the war in Cambodia are being illegally imported to Myanmar. That’s why our respective regional police forces are now checking those illegally trade of arms,” said Soe Myang.
The majority routes for arms trafficking come across the India–Myanmar and Thailand-Myanmar border areas. The police forces are now taking action using the Weapon Act to check for arms trafficking.
“We opened two police stations in Matupi Township in Mindat District close to the India border area. We are now investigating illegal trade including drug, arms and immigrants. We have seized drug controlled chemical medicines in last year,” said Myo Aung from Mindat District Police in Chin State.
IMPHAL, August 23: Referring to the news report and photos published in local daily newspapers on August 23 last that personnel of Myanmar Army have started building their post along the Indo-Myanmar border, the Manipur Peoples’ Party (MPP) has stated that ‘the mainland India’ might not have taken the issue seriously but to the State of Manipur, it is of paramount importance.
A statement issued by Heikrujam Nabashyam, spokesperson MPP alleged that after Jawaharlal Nehru, the then Prime Minister handed over the Kabow Valley, known as Kiyam Lamjao erstwhile to the Burmese leader U Nu in 1953 without considering the consent of the people of the State; the Govt of India is now again in the process of giving large portion of State’s land to Myanmar.
The statement further continued that such acts of the government could only propel bloodshed between Manipuris and Myanmarese though the two groups have been existing in a friendly manner for long.
In order to solve violent issues in North East India including in Manipur, the Govt of India by changing its present attitude and mindset should bring a political solution keeping proper boundary lines of all the north eastern States, he maintained.
Saying that the MPP party would give a befitting reply to the Chief Minister O Ibobi on the latter’s remarks that Congree party could only bring development and growth in the State, he further demanded immediate halt of fencing works being done along the Indo-Myanmar border.
The Manipur government has taken a serious view of the Myanmarese Army preparations to construct a temporary Army camp at Holenphai village, located 3 km from the police station at Moreh — the border town of Manipur. The State government is in contact with the Centre regarding the development, according to official sources.
Attempts to defuse the crisis by dissuading the Myanmarese Army officers from suspending the work till a final settlement is brought about were not fruitful as the officers said that they cannot do anything against the orders from their higher officials.
Meanwhile, several voluntary organisations and political parties in Manipur have been demanding the suspension of the work by Myanmarese Army personnel to erect a border fence as large chunks of the State’s land will be lost. Once the fence is erected, almost half of the 14 tribal villages in Chandel district will go to Myanmar. In the case of Choro in Ukhrul district, the entire village will be on the Myanmarese side of the fence. These political parties and NGOs have been threatening massive agitations to protect Manipur’s land.
Earlier, on the basis of complaints from Myanmar, erection of the 10 km-long border fence at Moreh had been suspended; Myanmar had said that its land had been encroached upon. The construction of the Integrated Check Post office was also suspended on similar ground.
The Myanmarese Army had started cutting trees at Holenphai village for the construction of the temporary Army base-camp, following which the village chief informed the district officials about the development. Robert Khetrimayum, Additional Collector of Moreh, accompanied by sub-divisional police officer H. Balram and Moreh police commando unit office-in-charge Sadananda visited the village on Thursday.
The official team found the Myanarmese Army cutting trees in the village. The Additional Collector told the commanding officer of 87 Light infantry of the Myanmarese Army to suspend the work till a settlement is brought about. However, the commanding officer was not happy that the Indian officials had come inside the “territory” of Myanmar. He told the Indian officials that he cannot do anything unless his higher officials gave him orders.
He also told the Indian officials that according to a map of the Britishers, this area is well within Myanmar.
NEW DELHI: India has alerted Bangladesh to the recent emergence of terror training camps for Rohingya Muslims in its Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) bordering Myanmar. Sharing intelligence inputs “from the ground”, the Union home ministry recently told Dhaka how Pakistani terror outfits like Lashker-e-Taiba (LeT) were allegedly training Rohingya rebels in camps spread across the CHT for “launching revenge attacks” in Myanmar.
During the just-concluded Indo-Bangladesh home secretary-level talks, the two sides discussed the need to arrest attempts by LeT/Jamaat-ud-Dawah (JuD) to exploit the Rohingya Muslims issue to open a new front on the Bangladesh-Myanmar border, close to India’s north-east region.
Home secretary Anil Goswami is said to have drawn his Bangladeshi counterpart’s attention to terror camps that have sprung in CHT region over the past six to seven months. These camps were witnessing terror training sessions by LeT and Jaish commanders, with help from local outfits like Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) that are linked to NGOs like Rohingya Solidarity Organisation (RSO). Rohingya Muslims, according to Indian intelligence reports, are being trained in use of firearms and bomb-making at these camps.
Bangladesh has assured India it will verify these camps on the ground.
Lashker/JuD had in mid-2012 created a new forum, Difa-e-Musalman Arakan (Burma) Conference (Defence of Muslims in Myanmar), to mobilize support for an anti-Myanmar government campaign. A two-member team â€” comprising JuD spokesperson Nadeem Awan and JuD Publications Wing member Shahid Mahmood Rehmatullah â€” was deputed last August to forge covert links with like-minded Islamic organizations in Bangladesh and Myanmar.
Other terror outfits such as Harkat-ul-Jihadi Islami, Jaish-e-Mohammed and JMB are also trying to exploit the Rohingyas’ plight to establish new bases in Bangladesh. Jammat-ul-Arakan, a new outfit comprising elements of JMB and extremist-minded Rohingyan activists, is reportedly running militant camps in Bandarban district along the Bangladesh-Myanmar border.
Meanwhile, with the NIA suspecting the role of Indian Mujahideen (IM) or a local arm sympathetic to the Rohingya Muslims’ cause, the involvement of an Assamese radical group in arranging the material for the bombs is being closely examined. Investigators believe that that not only were the timer clocks sourced from Guwahati, but even the cylinder may have been bought in Assam.
In the statement, Sitagu International Buddhist Missionary said it was extremely shocked by the bombings by some terrorists at Bodh Gaya in India’s Bihar Province on July 7.
Such terrorist acts contradict the essence of Buddhist teaching ‘tolerance and non-violence’ as well as the teachings of the four major religions- Christian, Islam, Hinduism and Judaism, said the statement.
Those major religions themselves accept the teachings of Buddha as the truth for universal peace. So, Sitagu International Buddhist Missionary categorically denounces the Bodh Gaya bombings, which is also a sign of threatening world ancient cultural heritages.
In the statement, the venerable monks urged world religious leaders to seek a way to ensuring universal peace and stability while safeguarding the world religions and cultural heritages.
The Indian government was also urged to expose and take severe action against the bombers and to take steps to avoid further terrorist acts.
The Buddhist monks also called on all Buddhists across the world to keep calm and adhere to ‘the tolerance and non-violence.
Serial bomb blasts occurred near Mahabodhi temple in Bodh Gaya compound in Bihar, eastern of India on July 7 morning, injuring five including a Myanmar Buddhist monk.
The statement was signed by Myanmar’s famous Buddhist monks, including Sitagu Buddhist monk Ashin Nyanisara, Dr Ariya Dhamma from American Sitagu Buddhist Missionary.
NEW DELHI: Even as the security establishment counters the pan-Indian network of Laskher-e-Taiba (LeT) and its indgenous arm Indian Mujahideen, the Pakistan-based terror outfit is busy opening another front close to the northeast region, along the Bangladesh-Myanmar border.
Inputs with R&AW, India’s external intelligence agency, confirm that LeT and its over groundavatar, Jamaat ud Dawah (JuD), are working to extend their footprint along the Bangladesh-Myanmar border by riding piggyback on the sectarian violence targeted against Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar’s Rakhine state. While JuD strongman Hafiz Muhammad Saeed is leading the anti-Myanmar campaign, espousing the cause of Rohingyas from various public platforms in Pakistan, his terror subordinates have been planning and undertaking visits to the Bangladesh-Myanmar border region. Agencies here fear the Bangladesh-Myanmar border may emerge as a new theatre of jihad in the not-too-distant future.
The sketches of a suspect in monk attire have been released based on details provided by eyewitnesses and CCTV footage.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) probing the serial bomb blasts in Bodh Gaya, on Tuesday released two sketches of a suspect on the basis of eyewitness accounts and CCTV footage.
NIA released two sketches, one in which the suspect is wearing a mask and another bare face, on its website.
Sources in NIA said that the sketches have been released on the basis of details provided by three eyewitnesses who saw the suspect before the blasts on July 7 and from CCTV footage.
Among the witnesses, whose names have been kept secret for probe purposes, two are foreigners and one local. The foreigners are from Sri Lanka and Thailand while the third one is a local Gaya native, the sources said.
The suspect in monk attire is also seen moving around in the temple in the wee hours of July 7. NIA has also released CCTV footage and sought information about the suspect.
The agency has already announced a reward of Rs. 6 lakh for providing information about the blasts suspect.
Ten bomb blasts took place in the famous Buddhist temple town of Bodh Gaya on July 7 in which two monks were wounded. While four explosions took place inside the Mahabodhi shrine campus, the rest exploded elsewhere in Bodh Gaya. Three live bombs were also defused by the security forces.
Considering the sensitivity of the matter, the Bihar government had handed over the inquiry to NIA.
Arrested and released
NIA had earlier detained two natives of Gaya from Maoist-infested Barachhati and four youngsters, including a girl, in Patna in connection with the incident. But, they were all released for want of evidence.
Private security guards removed
Taking strong note of security lapses resulting in serial bomb blasts in Maha Bodhi temple recently, the service of the private security company within the temple premises has been terminated.
Maha Bodhi Temple Management Committee (BTMC) took decision to terminate contract of private security company “COBRA” for lapses that resulted in explosions within the temple on July 7, wounding two monks.
The BTMC took strong exception to the fact that while the blasts took place after 5:30 a.m. on that day, why the guards of the security company, who are supposed to be on duty from 5 a.m. in the morning, did not see the bags that carried bombs kept near Maha Bodhi tree and elsewhere within the shrine premises, BTMC member Arvind Kumar said on Tuesday.
He said the committee served a month’s notice to the company to pack off from the temple.
COBRA had been assigned the job of security within the temple since 2009. The outer security was in the hands of Bihar police earlier.
With COBRA security guards withdrawn, security guards of BTMC are assisting the Bihar Military Police (BMP) personnel in providing security to the international Buddhist shrine.
Sources in the BTMC said despite previous alerts, some meetings by senior police and civil officers were conducted with the secretary or chairman of the committee but a meeting of the full bench of the BTMC was never conducted to review security arrangements.
Meanwhile BTMC has ordered for two additional metal detectors and bag checkers for frisking of visitors.
Pakistan-based militant groups have intensified infiltration attempts along the border and at least 250 to 300 militants are waiting on the other side of the Line of Control (LoC) to cross over into India, the Army said today.
General officer commanding (GoC) 16 corps Lieutenant General DS Hooda said this was only on the Jammu side. Inputs for activities on the Kashmir Valley side are handled by another corp, he said.
“There are inputs that the number of militants at the launching pads are changing, because militants do not stay permanently there, according to the latest figures there are 250 to 300 militants across the LoC at the launch pads, waiting to infiltrate and these are figures just on the Jammu side,”General Hooda said.
The General said so far infiltration attempts had been successfully foiled by Indian troops at the border, including one last night. Desperate, the militants are now changing tactics and targeting Army posts at the LoC, he added.
The border fence and an optical system installed by the Army are proving to be the biggest barriers for infiltrating militants, he added.
India’s deadliest poacher: Jailed for killing hundreds of tigers, Sansar Chand to walk free
“You are selling the skin of tigers and leopards. Tomorrow, you would sell even human skin,” Supreme Court to Chand in 2010.
India’s deadliest poacher, Sansar Chand, the man said to be single-handedly responsible for the missing tigers of the Sariska wildlife sanctuary in Rajasthan, is all set to walk out of jail.
A Delhi court today refused to slap a stringent anti-organized crime law against Sansar Chand, which would have been the only hurdle towards his bail. The 55-year-old, who has been in jail since 2005, could be out as early as this weekend.
Accused of killing over 200 tigers besides thousands of other wildlife species, Chand argued against being charged under the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) on technical grounds, that only those with two past convictions can be charged under the law.
Chand had already secured bail in other cases under the Wildlife Act. Two other alleged poachers arrested along with him, had been freed on bail a few years ago.
Arrested by the Delhi police in a dramatic, top secret swoop codenamed ‘Operation Murari Lal’, Sansar Chand was accused in at least 50 cases of killing and cruelty to animals, but thanks to shoddy investigations and the poacher’s ability to hoodwink the police, only one case could be proved conclusively.
Chand and dozens of his associates and relatives were held responsible for the killing of tigers and leopards at Sariska, wiping out big cats from the world renowned reserve. But despite being caught over a dozen times, the first time in 1974 when he was just 18, Chand always managed to get away.
Known to have joined the trade at 13, Sansar Chand mostly operated from the crowded Sadar Bazar market in the capital, not far from where he was finally arrested.
In 2010, the top court had slammed Sansar Chand in the strongest terms for challenging his conviction, saying: “You are selling the skin of tigers and leopards. Tomorrow, you would sell even human skin.”