KANGPOKPI, December 20: Suspected KNF (P) and KRA (U) cadres were involved in a shoot-out late last night at 9 at Khengjang village located south west from Sapormeina Police Station.
A team of Assam Rifles has, in the meantime, arrested five militant cadres believed to be involved in the shoot-out and recovered a huge quantity of arms and ammunition from them.
Local residents said that though the shoot-out lasted for about an hour from 9 to 10 pm, both sides escaped without any casualties or injuries.
However, the walls of the village community hall and the Village Golden Jubilee Stone were hit by several bullets.
Utensils inside a local residence were also hit by bullets. A van parked in the nearby village was also hit by bullets severely damaging the vehicle.
On the other hand, the 43 Assam Rifles ‘C’ Coy Motbung post has arrested three KNF (P) cadres and two KRA (U) cadres during a search operation conducted in the aftermath of the violent clash between the two groups.
The security forces also recovered arms and live ammunitions along with a land mine from a place suspected to be a hideout of one of the militant groups, further continued the source.
According to local sources, shortly after two three rounds of gunshot were heard around 9 pm yesterday there was a continuous gun shot in the village.
Hearing the gunshots, the villagers remained on the floors, as the bullets hit several walls, ceiling, roofs and even utensils narrated one villager of Khengjang.
He added that gunshots were heard till 10 pm.
We are learning gospel hymns for the coming Christmas at the Church Hall when the gunshots first began, narrated a Church member.
Fearing for our lives all the people inside the church remain on the ground, until the gunshots discontinued, he said.
In the meantime, 43 Assam Rifles Motbung Post rushed to the spot and conducted a search operation from 10:05 pm and continued it till 4 pm this evening in connection with the incident and apprehended five UGs with arms and ammunitions including a mine.
Three of the five militants apprehended by the AR belong to the KNF (P) while two other belong to KRA (U) said Maj J Pal, post commander 43 AR Motbung Post.
The post commander also expressed that one 9 mm Pistol with magazine and live ammunitions, one 7.65mm pistol with magazine and live ammunitions, one .22 Rifles with magazine and live ammunitions, two Chinese hand grenades, one No 36 hand grenade and one mine were recovered during the operation.
The apprehended cadres of KNF(P) has been identified as Tarzan, 26, Cavandish, 26 and Lunpimang Kipgen, 18 while the two KRA(U) cadres have been identified as sgt Gogou Chongloi, 24 and Dehkholal, 38.
The Khengjang Village Authority has, on the other hand, appealed to all not to create fear psychosis among the villagers and avoid disturbing the prevailing peaceful environment during the Christmas season.
The Village Authority further said that gunfight within the village is a threat to the many innocent civilians and every right thinking individual should at the best try to avoid such unwanted incident.