Shillong | A Deputy SP ranked officer, leading a Meghalaya police team, was injured when they were fired upon by Assam policemen who mistook them for militants in a remote village in West Jaintia Hills district today, a top police official said here.
Deputy Superintendent of Police Ploster Syiem, who was leading an operation against Karbi militants at Moolaber along the border of Assam’s Karbi Anglong district, sustained injuries in his left arm when Assam policemen fired, Meghalaya Director General of Police Peter J Hanaman said. Assam policemen who had reached the area ahead of their Meghalaya counterparts, opened fire mistaking the latter for militants, Hanaman said.
Earlier reports quoting Acting Deputy Commissioner D M Wahlang said the Deputy SP was injured when suspected Karbi militants attacked his police team. Both Assam and Meghalaya police approached the village after reports that Karbi militants had taken shelter there and were collecting tax from the people of Moolber village in Block I, the DGP said. Block I is one of the areas in dispute between Assam and Meghalaya and police presence was less in the area.
Assam police sent a party yesterday. Even today they sent one party at 8 or 9 AM when our team reached there at around 11 AM. When they entered into the forest where the militants are supposed to be hiding, the Assam police thought them to be militants and opened fire. This was primarily because they were dressed in non-khaki uniform, the DGP said.
The injured police officer was taken to the North East Indira Gandhi Regional Institute of Health and Medical Sciences near here and his condition was stable, Hanaman said. The Meghalaya police chief called for renewal of Standard Operating Procedures between the forces of the two states after the attack.
Police said operation in the area has been intensified as villagers had confirmed the presence of armed militants.
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