Agartala/Aizawl, Mar 13: Assam Rifles said Wednesday that the biggest ever haul of weapons in Mizoram came from Myanmar.
“The interrogation of the arrested people and investigation into the arms haul is under way,” Director General Lt. General Ranbir Singh said.
“Further details would be known only after the completion of the inquiry,” he said.
Assam Rifles seized 33 AK-47 rifles, a combat browning automatic rifle, a 5.56 automatic light machine gun, 49 loaded magazines and 809 rounds of ammunition from the outskirts of Aizawl March 7.
Five people, including three Bangladeshis and two Mizoram residents, were arrested in connection with the recovery near Lengpui airport in Mizoram. The state borders Myanmar and Bangladesh.
According to police and intelligence officials, the weapons were being smuggled to Bangladesh. “These arms might be for Shanti Bahini guerrillas of Bangladesh,” a source said.
Shanti Bahini was formed in 1972 to fight for the autonomy of the tribal people in the hill regions.
After undertaking a guerrilla war against the Bangladesh government for years, it abandoned militancy after signing a peace treaty with Dhaka Dec 2, 1997.
However, some disgruntled members opposed to the peace accord and formed a dissident group and are still active.
Lt. Gen. Singh commended the Assam Rifles for keeping “anti-national” elements at bay in Tripura.
Four northeastern states – Tripura, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Assam – share a 1,880-km border with Bangladesh, while Mizoram, Manipur, Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh have a 1,640-km unfenced border with Myanmar.