Puman Wangshu, prime accused of the case who is also a self-styled sergeant major of the NSCN (IM) Credit: EastMojo Image

Tinsukia: In a major breakthrough, a joint team of Army, Assam Rifles and Arunachal Police on Wednesday arrested self-styled sergeant major with National Socialist Council of Nagalim (IM), Puman Wangsu, a most-wanted militant is on the National Investigating Agency (NIA) list, wanted for the murder of MLA Tirong Aboh, from Arunachal’s Longding district.

42-year-old Tirong Aboh, MLA representing the Khonsa West constituency, his 20-year-old son Loggem Aboh and party general secretary Wangngoi Hakhun and eight others were killed in an ambush near Bogapani, around 20-km from district headquarters of Khonsa in Arunachal Pradesh. The four-vehicle convoy they were travelling in was stopped and fired upon on May 21.

Also Read: Khonsa MLA Tirong Aboh murder: NIA files chargesheet against 4

According to sources, based on intelligence inputs, a joint team of security forces arrested the accused in a covert operation. “He has confessed to his involvement in the killing and had opened fire on the convoy.”

“Security forces launched the operation in jungles of Longphong village and arrested the accused. He tried to flee from his hideout, a temporary shelter inside a bamboo forest,” sources in the army said.

Also Read: MLA Tirong Aboh case: Did Army catch mastermind or just a suspect?

The federal agency had registered a case under section 302, 307 and 34 of the Indian Penal Code and sections 25(1b) (a), 27 of Arms Act and section 10, 13 of UAPA Act on June 10 after the state government handed over the case to NIA. The first arrest in the case was of Yangte Josaham – self-styled lieutenant of NSCN-IM – area commander of Arunachal’s Longding district, from Dimapur in Nagaland in August 2019.

The original case was registered by Arunachal police. All attempts to speak to the superintendent of Longding police turned futile.

In another development, security forces arrested SS capt (revenue & political officer) Hangnog Pangtha alias Pangdong, a militant of NSCN (K2), from Changlang district in Arunachal Pradesh, in connection with extortion from contractors and government officials. He was earlier with NSCN (R).

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