A sharp decline has been registered in violence, extortion and attacks on security forces in the Northeast in the third year of the NDA government, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has said. As per data available with the MHA, only 484 such incidents were reported in 2016 as compared to 1,025 in 2012 and 732 in 2013 when the Congress-led UPA was in power.
The government described the Naga accord signed amid much fanfare in August 2015 with the Nationalist Socialist Council of Nagaland Isak-Muivah (NSCN-IM) as only a ‘framework agreement’. It further noted that the number of kidnappings have come down from 329 in 2012 and 307 in 2013 to 168 in 2016. Only 28 such cases were registered till March this year.
However, the number of security personnel killed in Manipur shows an upward trend with 24 being killed in 2015 and 11 in 2016 as compared to 8 and 5 deaths in 2012 and 2013, respectively. It may be recalled that 18 Army jawans were ambushed by NSCN-K in Manipur in June 2015 following which the Army claimed to have killed several militants involved in the attack near the Myanmar border in an operation.
The NDFB (S), a militant outfit responsible for the mass killings of tribals in December 2014, suffered a setback with more than 900 cadres being arrested and nearly 55 being killed in security operations, according to the MHA note. The number of such incidents in Assam jumped to 50 in 2016 as compared to 21 in 2013, the MHA note stated.
The number of militants surrendering also saw a decline with 267 such surrenders taking place in 2016 as compared to 1,161 in 2012, as per official data. Arms recovery was not significant despite a crackdown as 698 arms were seized in 2016 as compared to 1,856 in 2012.
As many as 1,202 militants were arrested in 2016 as compared to 2,145 in 2012. Of this, the highest number of arrests in 2016 have been made in Manipur (518) and Assam (366) while maximum kidnapping cases were reported from Nagaland (51) and Meghalaya (52).
The MHA also noted that the government has entered into Suspension of Operation and initiated political dialogue with factions of extremist groups, including the ULFA, NDFB and Kuki National Organisation.