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9 more rebels surrender in Tripura after fleeing Bangladeshi camps
Published on 10 Aug. 2009 11:44 PM IST
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Nine more tribal separatists have surrendered to the security forces in Tripura after fleeing from their bases in Bangladesh, officials said here Monday. With the latest surrender, 17 dreaded militants of banned All Tripura Tiger Force (ATTF) have laid down their arms and ammunition during the past one week after deserting their camps in neighbouring Bangladesh. “The Bangladesh-trained militants led by their self-styled captain Budha Debbarma, 27, surrendered before senior Border Security Force (BSF) and Assam Rifles officers late Sunday,” police spokesman Nepal Das said. The surrendered militants, who include four women, fled from their camps in Satchari in Sylhet district in northeastern Bangladesh, opposite Khowai township in western Tripura. They also deposited a large cache of arms and ammunition, including AK series rifles, one mortar and foreign made ammunition. Militants belonging to various rebel groups in the northeast have set up about 100 camps and hideouts in different parts of Bangladesh, specially Sylhet district and Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) bordering India’s Tripura, Mizoram and Meghalaya states. “We have managed to escape from our camps in Sylhet district after Bangladesh launched anti-insurgency operations in different parts of that country. Some more guerrillas may sneak into Tripura any time from across the border,” Debbarma told the BSF officials. With this, about 200 tribal guerrillas of ATTF and National Liberation Front of Tripura (NLFT), including some dreaded ultras carrying rewards of Rs.250,000 each and having Interpol arrest warrants, have fled from their Bangladeshi camps and surrendered to Indian security forces during the past one year. The ATTF and the NLFT had been demanding independence for the indigenous tribals and secession of Tripura from India.

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