Three personnel from 4 Assam Rifles unit lost their lives and four were injured in an ambush by terrorists from People’s Liberation Army (PLA) in Chandel district, Manipur near the border with Myanmar, reports ANI.
The terrorists first carried out an IED blast and then fired at the troops. Reinforcements have been rushed to the area which is 100 km from Imphal. PLA is a banned organisation that seeks to establish an independent communist state in the entire Northeast.
As per SATP (South Asia Terrorism Portal)-
“People’s Liberation Army (PLA) was established under the leadership of N. Bisheswar Singh on September 25, 1978. The PLA aims to organise a revolutionary front covering the entire Northeast and unite all ethnic groups, including the Meiteis, Nagas and Kukis, to liberate Manipur. PLA, though a Meiti outfit, claims itself to be a trans-tribal organisation seeking to lead the non-Meiteis as well.
In 1989, the PLA formed a political body Revolutionary People’s Front (RPF) that established a government-in-exile in Bangladesh. PLA activists are equipped with sophisticated arms. The group has also been reportedly involved in widespread extortion operations.
PLA recruits were trained in guerrilla warfare by the then united National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN) at its headquarters in Challam, beyond the Somrah Tract, in north Myanmar during the eighties. PLA is also reported to have contacts with Pakistan’s Inter Services Intelligence (ISI).”
PLA founder Bishweshwar Singh emphasized the need for a “War of Independence” with Chinese support on the basis of the principles of Marxism- Leninism and Mao’s thoughts. Almost 90% of the weapons used by North East terror groups are believed to be supplied by China.
In March, two terrorists of PLA and Kangleipak Communist Party-Maoist (KCP-Maoist) were arrested from Imphal East District. Attacks on security forces are very common in North East, but unfortunately they do not get the same coverage in mainstream media as Islamic terror attacks sponsored by Pakistan, and neither is the ideology and linkages of the North East terror groups discussed in detail.
PLA has close links with other terrorist groups in Manipur and the North East like UNLF, PREPAK, NSCN-K (a faction of National Socialist Council of Nagaland which wants to establish Greater Nagaland or ‘Nagalim’ based on Maoism and ‘Nagaland for Christ’), ULFA. PLA was deeply involved in the creation of umbrella terror group United Liberation Front of Western South East Asia (UNLFW) which in May 2015 killed 7 jawans of Assam Rifles.
In June 2015, armed with rocket-propeller grenades (RPGs) and improvised explosive devices (IEDs), UNLFW terrorists ambushed an Army convoy in Manipur’s Chandel district, leaving 18 Armymen dead and 11 others injured. It was in response to this deadly attack that Bharat launched a surgical strike on UNLFW terror camps in Myanmar killing 38 terrorists.
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