Hynniewtrep National Liberation Council (HNLC) Ban Re-imposed Under UAPA
The Hynniewtrep National Liberation Council (HNLC) is a militant organization operating in Meghalaya, India. It claims to be a representative of the Khasi-Jaintia tribal people, and its aim is to free the Meghalaya from the alleged domination of the Garos and the non-tribal outsiders (the “Dkhars”). HNLC is an active group formed c. 1992.
In a notification, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) said that the HNLC along with all its factions, wings and frontal organisations has been openly declaring as its objective the secession of the state’s areas, which are largely inhabited by Khasi and Jaintia tribals, from the Indian union.
The Times of India quoting the notification said that the group continues to intimidate and bully civilians to extort funds, maintains links with other insurgent groups of the Northeast to carry out acts of extortion and intimidation, and maintains camps in Bangladesh to give sanctuary and training to its cadre, it said. The central government is also of the opinion that HNLC’s activities are detrimental to the sovereignty and integrity of India.
The MHA notification states that if these are not immediately curbed and controlled, the HNLC will regroup and rearm itself, expand its cadre base, procure sophisticated weapons, cause loss of lives of civilians and security forces, and accelerate its anti-national activities, the MHA said.
“Now, therefore, in exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (1) of section 3 of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967 (37 of 1967), (hereinafter referred to as the said Act), the central government hereby declares the HNLC, along with all its factions, wings and front organisations as unlawful association,” the notification said.
The ministry also listed the violence perpetrated by the HNLC in recent past that include four incidents involving killing of one civilian, during the period from January 1, 2015, to July 31, 2019, arrest of 16 of its cadres, recovery of four weapons, surrender of 14 of its cadres and kidnapping of four persons.
Earlier, the HNLC was declared a banned organisation on November 16, 2000 but the ban was later lifted.