IMPHAL, Oct 18: Union home secretary G. K. Pillai denied any knowledge of the reported arrest of United National Liberation Front, UNLF, chairman RK Sanayaima in Bangaldesh.
Pillai on his arrival here yesterday on a four-day visit to Manipur to attend a series of development seminars also told media persons at the Tulihal airport that Sanayaima was not arrested by anyone from India but he was arrested by Bangladeshi authorities.
Pillai today was even more guarded, denying any knowledge of the arrest of Sanayaima in Bangladesh. This is for the first time any Central official publicly commented on the reported arrest of the UNLF chairmen.
“We have no information about his (Sanayaima) detention in Bangladesh. All these media reports that Sanayaima was arrested in Bangladesh and was brought to India are all not correct,” the home secretary today told the media in the sidelines of development seminar on Imphal East district held at Classic Hotel, Imphal.
The seminar was jointly organized by home ministry, ministry of DoNer and Manipur government and sponsored by the North Eastern Council (NEC). This is the fourth such seminar held in Manipur after Tamenglong, Bishnupur and Senapati districts. Pillai would attend one more development seminar for Ukhrul district tomorrow.
“Now that the vice chairman of the UNLF himself issued a statement claiming that Sanayaima was arrested in Bangladesh we will now take up the matter with Bangladesh government and try to find out the actual facts,” Pillai said.
Asked whether Bangladesh was detaining the UNLF leader the home secretary said “There is no official word about his arrest. Let us wait together for any official communication from Bangladesh about the matter. Let the government of India find out first. We can’t make statements on what we don’t know,” he said.
He said that the Centre would try to find out whether Bangladesh authorities detained anyone. “Sanayaima may be in custody of Bangladesh government under some other names. These people use various names. We don’t know whether they (Bangladesh) arrested him or not,” Pillai reiterated.
Following reports in the sections of the media, UNLF vice-chairman Kh Pambei issued a statement on October 16 claiming RAW and Bangladesh intelligence officials intercepted Sanayaima while he was travelling in a car from Dhaka on September 29.
The media reports said Sanayaima was arrested in Bangladesh and was brought to Delhi. So far Manipur government has been denying any information about the rebel leader’s arrest.
Today’s statement contradicted what Pillai yesterday told reporters yesterday on his arrival at the Tulihal airport. “Regarding that he was not arrested by anyone in India. I have also read about the news. He was arrested by Bangladeshi authorities,” Pillai had said replying to a question whether Sanayaima was arrested.
This contradictory statement added to the confusion surrounding the reported arrest of Sanayaima. The UNLF charged Indian government of kidnapping their leader.