IMPHAL, Sept 10: The Kuki National Organisation (an umbrella of Kuki underground groups) while condemning the killing of four cadres of KNO/KLA and a civilian truck driver by Indian security forces at Mongkot village, says the killing was done in a ‘Fake encounter’. In a statement issued today by outfit’s secretary information and publicity Lenin H Kuki, the KNO said the killing was a gross violation of human rights and noncompliance to SoO ground rules by the Maratha Light Infantry.
Giving their side of explanation about the Mongkot incident, the KNO claimed that KLA cadres were moving in the area in compliance to the SoO ground rules after obtaining permission from 23 Assam Rifles post at Yaingangpoki.
In compliance to the SoO ground rules, on September 6, the PRO of KNO/KLA Gorrey Kuki obtained permission from Maj. Akshay and Capt. Kaushal of 23 Assam Rifles post based at Yaingangpokpi and Litan respectively for 10 cadres of KLA to carry out routine operation near Jaolen, a Kuki village in Ukhrul district, the KNO statement said.
However, on September 7 the CO of 23 AR sent a message to KLA asking cadres to return to their base camp, the KNO said adding that complying with the CO`s message, the KLA cadres mounted a truck bearing registration number NLN 01A-2892 at about 5:30 pm and set out towards their base camp. En route, between Mongkot village and Sangkai village along N.H. 150 a column of 12 MLI headed by Capt. Vivek stopped the truck and asked the cadres to dismount and identify themselves. Lt. Thangkhochon @ Romance Kuki, leader of the KLA patrol unit was blindfolded and interrogated, it said adding the PRO of KNO/KLA Gorrey Kuki informed Capt. Vivek of the 12 MLI that they belonged to KNO/KLA urged him to speak to Capt. Kaushal of the 23 AR over cell phone so that he may be appraised of the prior permission obtained for their routine operation.
The KNO statement further said that Capt. Vivek spoke to Capt. Kaushal but former disregarded his response but allowed Gorrey to leave on his motorbike.
Thereafter, Capt. Vivek ordered to the KLA cadres to lay down their weapons, following which they were severely tortured and shot specifically at their heads. Four of the cadres and the truck driver died on the spot while five managed to escape unhurt, if said.
The KNO also alleged that unheroic deeds by the MLI was accompanied by four persons of the CORE- Intelligence Surveillance Unit namely Naik Subedar Rawat, Naik NS Singh, Naik K Chandra, and Naik TD Singh and all of them were travelling in Alto Car bearing Regd. No MN-02 9371.
The KNO further said that the reported statements may refer to the incident as `shoot-out/ encounter`, but that would not be acceptable to the KNO, as it would tantamount to negation of truth. In a situation involving an encounter, it is highly unlikely that the casualties would be that of one party`s only, the KNO asserted.
The Imphal Free Press