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Ri Bhoi police dismantle sleeper cell of HNLC, arrest 3

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Nongpoh, June 11: In a significant breakthrough, the Ri Bhoi Police have successfully dismantled a sleeper cell of the banned Hynniewtrep National Liberation Council (HNLC) operating in the Mawhati-Umroi area of Ri Bhoi District and Shillong city.

This operation was carried out in the wake of several extortion and demand notes served to individuals by the insurgent group.

According to Jagpal Singh Dhanoa, the Superintendent of Police of Ri Bhoi District, the sleeper cell was led by senior HNLC cadre Cyfrank Paul Pariat of Ummat village. Pariat, along with his associates, had issued multiple demand notes on behalf of the HNLC, coercing individuals to pay extortion money under the threat of severe consequences.

A meticulously planned joint operation was launched on June 10, 2024, resulting in the arrest of three key figures. The arrested individuals include Cyfrank Paul Pariat, 25, from Ummat village, who is described as a self-styled commander of the HNLC, Kitbok Mujai, 23, also from Ummat village, and Barnabas Lyngdoh, 49, from Khyndewso village.

These arrests has revealed that the trio was deeply involved in the recruitment, financing, and propaganda activities for the HNLC, a proscribed organization under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA). It has been uncovered that they had traveled to Bangladesh last year for training purposes. Consequently, a case has been registered at the Umiam Police Station under case number 46(06)2024, invoking sections 120B/306 of the Indian Penal Code, along with sections 10/13/17/18 of the UAPA.

The police have intensified their investigation to identify and apprehend additional members or associates linked to the HNLC network. Superintendent Dhanoa issued a general appeal to the public, urging them not to succumb to any illegal demands from the HNLC and to report any such illegal activities or contacts to the police immediately.

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