Assam: Two Ulfa-I arrested with old notes in Dibrugarh
GUWAHATI, May 31, 2018: Two Ulfa (I) linkmen were arrested by 9th Battalion of the Rajputana Rifles and police from Chaulkhowa , Dibrugarh district during a joint operation on Wednesday, leading to the recovery of demonetised currency notes with a face value of Rs 42.5 lakh from them.
The two linkmen were identified as Binod Sahani, 41, a resident of Doomdooma town in Tinsukia district and Shrishti Hazarika, 49, of Tinsukia town.
The duo, carrying a consignment of banned currency notes, were going from Moran to Chabua on a motorcycle when the joint team apprehended them from National Highway 37 at Chaulkhowa, 3km from Dibrugarh town.
"The two Ulfa (I) linkmen had collected the demonetised notes from a Moran-based businessman and they were supposed to hand over the consignment to another overground worker of the banned outfit at Chabua. After converting it to legal currency, they were suppose to hand it over to the banned outfit at an undisclosed location at Doomdooma," a press release said.
The duo were interrogated by senior police officials at the Dibrugarh police station to trace the banned currency notes and also ascertain if any bank employee were involved in the racket, considering the huge sum which was supposed to be changed to legal tender.
The police suspect that the notes were part of a large cash stash of Ulfa (I), which could not be converted into legal money after the sudden ban on high-value currency notes by the Centre on November 8, 2016.
Sources said all major militant groups from the Northeast, including Ulfa (I) were hit hard by the government's decision that made the high-value currency notes defunct overnight.
In recent times, several arrested Ulfa (I) cadres have revealed that the outfit has been facing severe funds crisis after demonetisation. The militant outfit has been trying to recover its losses by indulging in mass extortion targeting the business community and tea planters, especially in the Upper Assam districts.
The security forces have intensified counter-insurgency operations against the rebel group in Tinsukia and Dibrugarh districts.
They have arrested many Ulfa (I) cadres from Upper Assam, so far.
Source: The Telegraph
Featured image: The Telegraph