Militants threaten Rengma tribals, force them to flee

Dimapur (Nagaland), June 20 : Security has been stepped up after militants threatened a tribe in Nagaland and forced them to flee their homes.

The militant group hails from Assam and is reported to have threatened members of the Rengma Tribe living in Assam's Karbi Anglong district to leave their land and take shelter in relief camps.

Security forces were deployed in large numbers in and around Rengma villages, after threats of attack by the Karbi People's Liberation Tigers militant group.

"Till peace is restored, one strong force will be stationed at Barloungsu Rengma village. The entire Rengma villages will be under watch and police patrolling will be tightened. Police, army, CRPF will visit the villages frequently," said Karbi-Anglong District's Additional Superintendent of Police, Bolin Deori.

Hundreds of men, women and children of Rengma tribe of Nagaland have been displaced from their homes and forced to take shelter in relief camps.

Some people took shelter near a district police station. A lot of people have been hiding inside the Rengma Church.

Tribals of a few villages left their ancestral houses, and more than 600 of them fear returning to their native homes.

"The Karbi militants told us to vacate the respective villages or face dire consequences and since I have small children, I was afraid and that's why we came here to the relief camp to seek shelter," said Rashe Rengma, a displaced victim.

Karbi People's Liberation Tiger sent a notice reading 'Accept Karbi identity or leave Rengma Hills before July 9 to the Regma Nagas.

The villagers had no choice but to abandon their villages and leave behind their animals and livestock, which are one of the main sources of income of the locals.

Nagaland has about 19 tribes. It has a history of tribal and ethnic rifts. All past peace initiatives have failed to resolve the age-old animosity between the various Naga tribes and many remain sceptical saying that without all factions involved, there can never truly be peace.

--ANI (Posted on 20-06-2013)

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