Rogue Meghalaya cop dismissed

Saturday, September 4, 2010

SHILLONG - Champion R. Sangma, a Meghalaya police officer-turned-militant who floated the Garo National Liberation Army (GNLA), has been sacked, an official said Saturday.

“The government has terminated Champion’s service. He is no longer a policeman and is a free-bird now,” Director General of Police S.B. Kakati told IANS.

He said the order terminating services of Champion, a deputy superintendent of police, was notfified by the government about 15 days ago.

Champion floated the GNLA in 2008 and fled to forests.

Kakati said Champion was an indisciplined officer and his dismissal was sought on several instances.

“He (Champion) never attended work and remained absent for months, therefore, his post was never made permanent and his dismissal was sought after a departmental inquiry into his conduct,” the police chief added.

Champion, whose militant organisation is demanding sovereign Garoland in west Meghalaya, has forged a close operational relationship with other northeast-based insurgent groups such as the National Socialist Council of Nagaland (Isak-Muivah) (NSCN-IM), the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) and the National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB).

The GNLA’s foot soldiers are deserters, mostly from the NDFB, the Achik National Volunteers Council (ANVC) and the Liberation of Achik Elite Force (LAEF).

According to police, the GNLA is reported to have made extortion demands ranging from Rs.5 lakh to Rs.1 crore from legislators, government officials and businessmen.

Meghalaya, especially the Garo Hills region, is being used as a safe haven by various northeast-based militant groups, including the NSCN-IM, the ULFA and a faction of the NDFB, state police say.

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