Arms smuggling in North East India; Home Ministry orders investigation

 From Bhupen Goswami

GUWAHATI : Arms smuggling is continuously taking place in north-eastern India. A joint operation by Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) and Assam Rifles has revealed a large arms smuggling racket in the North Eastern Region. According to a report by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence, criminals from Jharkhand and Bihar are procuring weapons from Nagaland by obtaining fake arms licences. The state police headquarters has also issued special alerts to all districts regarding the activity and use of the gang that purchased weapons from Nagaland.

A letter in this regard was sent to the State Police Headquarters by the Union Home Ministry. Following a letter from the Union Home Ministry, the headquarters has directed action against those who have taken arms licences from Nagaland. A gang of arms smugglers from Nagaland has been unearthed in the state in the past. The NIA probe had also revealed that the people of Nagaland separatist leader Angan Santhanam provided weapons to the militant outfit as well as fake arms licence rackets. National permit licences of arms are forged from Nagaland and Jammu and Kashmir. The expensive weapon is then procured from Kolkata on the basis of the same licence. In several districts including Ranchi, criminal and domineering people are procuring weapons through this licence.

The State Police Headquarters has directed that wherever a person purchases a weapon using the Arms Licence of Nagaland anywhere in the State, he should be examined. Action should be taken in this regard by taking a report of arms licence from Nagaland. A case under the Arms Act has been ordered to be registered in the case if the licence issued from Nagaland turns out to be fake. DrI and Assam Rifles are conducting operations in the international border frontier areas of north east India following intelligence inputs about smuggling of AK-47 rifles from Myanmar to bangladesh rebel outfits along the Mizoram border. According to a report by the Union Home Ministry, the Union Home Ministry is supplying AK-47 and 56 rifles from Nagaland and Mizoram, the king of the North Son. Foreign weapons are reaching India via Burma and Bangladesh in Nagaland.

 There have been many cases of arms smuggling. Following the report received from the Ministry of Home Affairs, Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) and Assam Rifles are conducting operations in international border border areas of the entire North East India. On the other hand, according to the report of the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence, the arms smuggling routes of the North-East have now become golden. A report by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence said that arms smuggling routes are being used for gold boats in the country and the North Eastern Region has recorded the highest seizure of yellow metal in 2020-21 till March. The DRI report said that after 2019-20, arms smuggling took a beating with the decline in insurgency. But as the routes and networks of carriers were already in place, a switch was made from weapons to gold. ET has seen a copy of the report. According to DRI, smuggling of gold through air routes from West Asian countries has become a risky proposition, making smuggling networks prefer land or sea routes. “Until recently the preferred routes of gold smuggling were air routes from the Middle East, from where gold was being pushed into India most illegally. Due to increasing surveillance of customs and DRI at international airports, smuggling of gold has become a risky proposition, which makes smuggling networks prefer land or sea routes. “Until recently, the preferred gold smuggling routes were air routes from the Middle East, from where most gold was being illegally pushed into India.

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