Top commander of banned ULFA (I) Dhristi Rajkhowa surrenders
Deputy commander-in-chief of the banned United Liberation Front of Assam-Independent (ULFA-I) Dhristi Rajkhowa surrendered to the Meghalaya police on Wednesday evening in big success for security forces.
He is being escorted by Meghalaya police to Assam where he will be handed over to their counterparts. Sources inform that the army was keen to take possession of the militant but was denied by Meghalaya police who intended to deliver him to the Assam police.
Rajkhowa, with his four bodyguards, gave up after an intense encounter with Meghalaya police’s elite SF10 commandos at around 6pm in an area in South Garo Hills district, highly placed police sources confirmed to HT.
“It’s true, Rajkhowa has surrendered and presently there is still movement and so we are not in a position to comment further. Suffice to say that it happened today evening,” a senior police official said requesting anonymity.
An AK-81 assault rifle with two magazines of 90 rounds, 2 pistols with magazine and ammunition were recovered from the rebel leader and his team.
Sources further told HT that the rebel leader was on the run lately after two encounters with Meghalaya police almost landed him in the net. The first was in March in Bolbokgre village in the same district and as recently as on October 20 when he narrowly escaped an encounter with commandos of the Meghalaya police in Bolchokgre village also in the same district.
“Ever since then, he has been under tremendous pressure and has been on the run trying to avoid our teams because we were maintaining the heat consistently,” the official said.
Rajkhowa - known to be a close confidant of Paresh Baruah, the commander-in-chief of ULFA (I) - is an explosives expert and is also a central committee member of the rebel group. His prowess and loyalty to Baruah earned him a promotion to the present position of deputy-commander-in-chief in November 2011.
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