TURA, Jan 11: In a major development to the sensational kidnapping of three traders from Dalu, police sources confirmed the kidnappers used dummy weapons to stage the apprehension where eight others managed to escape.
The development sheds new light into the reason why the 8 persons were able to escape the clutches of the kidnappers so easily as not even one shot was fired.
At about 7:15 am on Tuesday, armed men waylaid a group of people travelling from the town of Dalu in West Garo Hills (WGH) district to the village of Jadugre for the weekly market. While 8 of the 11 persons in the truck fled upon seeing the armed men, three were taken by the group which was using what has now come through as dummy weapons. The incident occurred near the village of Dumnikura just in front of the Telekali Forest Reserve.
The place of the incident is about 2 kms from the international border with Bangladesh and has seen various cross border groups of criminals being active in the area.
The three taken hostage have been identified as Tamal Dey (38) of Killapara, Dulan Mahanta (36) also of Killapara and Durgapada Dutta (35) of Chaipani all under Dalu PS limits in West Garo Hills.
While it was initially thought that the kidnapping to be the handiwork of ASAK militants, police on Wednesday put the onus of the kidnapping on cross border groups with the support of some local elements from within the South Garo Hills (SGH) region.
“We have identified a few people and arrests are expected to be made soon in the case. The kidnappers used fear as a weapon and were able to kidnap despite using fake weapons,” said the Superintendent of Police, SGH, Anand Mishra.
Kidnapping cases in the SGH district had literally become zero before Tuesday’s incident. Almost all GNLA militants, who were a part of the district either surrendered or were arrested. The other active group ASAK has been on the run ever since the last kidnapping of 11 traders from Assam were attributed to them.
There was however no confirmation if the kidnappers took their hostages across the border or whether any contact had been made for ransom till the filing of this report.