Centre must take care of borders to stop arms supply: Mukul

‘Talks only after militants give up anti-India stand’

Chief Minister Mukul Sangma replies to the discussion on Governor’s address in the Assembly on Friday. (ST)

SHILLONG: Chief Minister Mukul Sangma on Friday asserted in the Assembly that the Centre must take care of the international borders and stop illegal smuggling of arms and ammunition by militants.
Summing up the debate on the Governor’s address, the Chief Minister said that it is only with the active involvement of the Centre and the support of various governments in the Northeast that the problem of infiltration of arms and ammunition to Meghalaya and the rest of the region can be stopped.
Sangma said that many splinter groups sprang up in Garo Hills due to easy availability of sophisticated arms.
“There are too many guns available at throw away prices. The recent recovery of spares of anti-aircraft gun in Garo Hills, explosives and IEDs procured from too many sources is alarming,” the Chief Minister said.
According to the Chief Minister, the trend is that militants procure new consignments after selling their old weapons at cheaper rates.
“The easy availability of sophisticated arms is a cause of concern; both the Centre and the Northeast governments should actively participate to contain the trend,” Sangma said.
Commenting on the statement of GNLA that it will resort to serial blasts to stop operations, the Chief Minister said that sustained efforts through operations are meant to exert pressure on the outfits.
On the suggestion by Opposition leader Donkupar Roy that there should be unconditional talks with the militants, the Chief Minister said that with both GNLA and HNLC continuing with their anti-national stands, talks cannot be held.
“We had firmly stated that outfits should refrain from anti-national activities. The ban extended against HNLC was mainly due to its anti-national stand by way of calling bandhs on days of national importance,” the Chief Minister said.
According to the Chief Minister, the militants are welcome to hold stalks soon after they stop calling bandhs during Republic Day and Independence Day celebrations.