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GUWAHATI, JUNE 2: Seven militant outfits, including those in ceasefire, thrive on funds amounting to several crore siphoned off every year from the Centre and state government's development funds allocated to NC Hills Autonomous Council.

Sleuths investigating the council-militant nexus in the district after the arrest of the council's chief executive member Mohet Hojai said at least 20 per cent of the annual funds allocated to the council to run the 30 departments find their way into the coffers of NSCN-IM, NSCN-K and DHD (Nunisa), who have declared ceasefire with the Centre, DHD (J), Dimasa National Liberation Front, Kuki National Front, Hmar People's Convention (Democratic). Sources said every year the outfits would receive by Rs 13 to Rs 16 crore depending on the size of the annual Plan of the council. Sources said there were reports of outfits levying taxes up to 10 per cent on the monthly salary of every government official, 20 per cent on businessmen and lump sum of Rs 500 from petty traders.

Employees of several Central government organizations, who are posted in the district, are known to draw their salaries not at the place of posting but at their headquarters outside the district and state.

The NCHAC, set up under Sixth Schedule of the Constitution, has the administrative control over 30 departments, except, law and order subject. For the 2008-09 fiscal the District Planning Board approved Plans of various departments with a total budget allocation of Rs 75.47 crore in 2007- 08 fiscal. In 2007-08, the annual Plan allocation for the council was Rs 94 87 crore. Chief minister Tarun Gogoi has admitted that the development funds of the council have been flowing into the hands of militants.

Police on Tuesday again picked up Hojai's predecessor Depolal Hojai for further questioning on finding his role in funding militant outfits, while he was heading the council.

He was picked up on Monday but allowed to leave later in the night. On April 1 last, four men, carrying Rs 1 crore in cash allegedly given to them by Mohet Hojai to take to DHD (J) men in Shillong for arms purchase were arrested near the Assam-Meghalaya border here.

Sources pointed that it is the easy flow of funds form the council that have kept so many militant outfits alive in the district, including those that have its roots in other states.

Geographically NC Hills district is bounded Nagaland and Manipur in the east, Meghalaya and Karbi Anglong district of Assam in the west, Nagaon and Karbi Anglong district in the north and Cachar district in the south.

The ethnic picture shows that the beside the dominant Dimasa Kachari, the district is also home to Zemes Nagas, known as Zeliang in Nagaland and as Zeliangrong on Manipur border, Hmars, who migrated from Burma and Manipur, Karbi, Kuki, Bietes, Hrangkhol, Sakachep, Vaiphes, Khasi-Pnars and Rongmei Nagas.

Courtesy: Visit TOI for latest national and world news

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