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China may help India nab Ulfa chief Paresh Baruah

| MANOJ ANAND
Published : Oct 3, 2016, 6:21 am IST
Updated : Oct 3, 2016, 6:21 am IST

In what may be a major assault on insurgency in Northeast, China has agreed to cooperate with India in identifying and apprehending Ulfa (I) chief Paresh Baruah and other insurgent leaders who are bel

In what may be a major assault on insurgency in Northeast, China has agreed to cooperate with India in identifying and apprehending Ulfa (I) chief Paresh Baruah and other insurgent leaders who are believed to be seeking shelter in the frontier province of China of late.

Disclosing that the issue of Ulfa (I) chief seeking shelter in China came up for discussion during a dialogue with his counterpart in Beijing on September 29, Joint Intelligence Committee chairman R.N. Ravi told this newspaper that his Chinese counterpart suggested that they should send spotter to identify and apprehend the insurgent leaders who have holed themselves up in China’s territory.

Pointing out that secretary-general of the Commission for Political and Legal Affairs of the Communist Party of China Central Committee Mr Wang Yongqing is visiting India for a meeting with union home minister Rajnath Singh next month, Mr Ravi said that some mechanism would also be worked out to flush out Northeast insurgent leaders operating from Chinese soil and to share intelligence in real time.

He also said that India has shared information with China on how Northeast insurgents are using Chinese arms and explosives and inflicting violence in northeastern states.

The Ulfa chief has been living in Tengchong on the Sino-Myanmar border since he fled Bangladesh in 2009 after the Sheikh Hasina government started a massive crackdown against Northeast rebel groups.

Authoritative security sources dealing with insurgency in the Northeast said that Baruah has been operating from Tengchong on the Sino-Myanmar border, from where he is also in touch with a Chinese intelligence officer in Ruili and a woman from the Dai tribe. He was also found to have been visiting Kunming frequently to meet some Chinese intelligence sleuths.

India has shared some more specific intelligence with its counterpart in China, security sources said, adding that Ulfa (I) chief may have been maintaining links with some lower-grade intelligence sleuths but Beijing was not patronising them as claimed by these fugitives.

It is significant that Ulfa (I) chief recently warned a Hindu students organisation to refrain from carrying out any campaign to boycott Chinese products in Assam.