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HNLC wants interlocutor before ending violence

Shillong, July 18: The HNLC said it will shun violence only if the government appoints an interlocutor for peace talks.

In a statement to the media, the HNLC general secretary-cum-publicity secretary Sainkupar Nongtraw said, “ We will not give up violence until the government comes up with something concrete . We are not ready to shun violence until and unless an interlocutor is appointed.”

This is in response to the appeal of Chief Minister Conrad Sangma asking the HNLC to shun violence after the incident of IED explosion at the Khliehriat police reserve.

“As long as there is no official communication, we shall keep spearheading our movement and without fail,” Nongtraw said.

The outfit wants the government to show practically that it is serious so that they will stop violence.

The HNLC leader said the outfit had time and again sent various letters addressed to the state government, the central government including the Ministry of Home Affairs.

“Deliberate discussions were held within the council’s leaders to facilitate peace talks. The council has documented each and every letter for future reference, in case we are told that we did not want peace and that we should shun the path of violence,” Nongtraw said.

He said from 2004 it has already been 17 years but nothing concrete has been achieved in terms of talks.

Outfit disowns over ground workers   

The HNLC said the four persons arrested in connection with the IED blast have no connection with the outfit.

“The police department tried to show its swiftness by arresting youths who weren’t at all associated with it. We would also like to clarify that all the four persons arrested are not our cadres neither our overground workers,” Nongtraw said.

He said the trained cadres and bomb experts started their operation as planned and escaped as per plan on the fateful night.

He  also claimed that in connection with the IED blast at the police reserve, Khliehriat, the police department was shocked to find out that the outfit’s cadres were able to intensify a blast at such a strategic location.

The HNLC leader further claimed that this was the fourth blow to the police department.

The outfit said in a span of one year, the outfit  executed 4 IED blasts in West Khasi Hills and Jaintia Hills.

According to the HNLC, the first IED was planted at a coke factory in Jaintia Hills and without executing it.

The second blast took place at Shallang coke factory, then the ambush at Dharmendra Bansal’s car, followed by a blast at Soo Kilo. “Then our cadres blew up the quarters of the Star Cements followed by the SP office quarters attack at East Jaintia Hills,” he said.

Nongtraw said none of the outfit’s members were arrested in these cases.

“The police must have realised that the HNLC is far more capable in terms of operations and it’s executions, he said.

The HNLC leader also threatened to execute another blast that may create history for the state.

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