Shillong, Nov 5 : Meghalaya's Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) commandos Monday seized cash over Rs.22 lakh, explosives and electronic gadgets from the residence of an outlawed GNLA rebel leader, a police official said.

"Acting on a tip-off, SWAT commandos raided the house of Sohan D. Shira, the military wing chief of the Garo National Liberation Army (GNLA) and found cash amounting to Rs.22,83,500 hidden in the ceiling of the house," Inspector General of Police (Law and Order) G.H.P. Raju told IANS.

The commandos also seized 25 electric detonators, eight wireless sets along with chargers, two handycams, three solar plates, four solar LED home lights, 13 solar lamps, three mobile phones, 16 SIM cards and two pencil battery chargers.

"We cannot say how the money came here and from where it came. It would require further investigations," Raju said.

He added that police were recording the statement of Sengchi R. Marak, Shira's wife.

"Marak is actively involved in collecting extortion money and other material for GNLA hit and run operations," Raju said.

The GNLA, fighting for a separate Garoland, is headed by arrested Champion R. Sangma, a former deputy superintendent of police who deserted the Meghalaya Police owing to alleged harassment by his superiors and floated the GNLA in November 2009.

Sangma was arrested July 30 near the India-Bangladesh border in Meghalaya. The state government had terminated his services in July 2010.

The outfit, which has been outlawed by the central government, forged an operational alliance with the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) and the National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB), which provided it access to sophisticated arms and ammunition.

GNLA rebels, who number around 100, unleashed terror in three impoverished districts of Garo Hills in the last one year and killed over 35 people, including security personnel.


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