9 bodies found in Nagaland, one of Assam student leader

Highly decomposed bodies of nine persons, who were blindfolded with hands tied and shot from close range, have been found in a gorge in Nagaland's Dimapur district adjacent to Assam, the police said today.

Police discovered the bodies stacked atop each other near Chumukedima last night, Dimapur SP V Z Angami said.

While one of the bodies was identified to be of a missing Karbi student leader from Bokajan in Assam, the other eight bodies were yet to be identified.

Bokajan is a town in the trouble torn Karbi Anglong district in Assam and close to the inter-state border.

The bodies were found blindfolded with hands tied behind and shot from close range on the heads, Angami said, adding that the corpses were covered with a polythene sheet over which some boulders were placed.

It was suspected the nine might have been killed over a week ago as the bodies were decomposed beyond recognition.

Some labourers who were passing the spot got a foul smell emanating there and noticed human feet in the pile, following which they informed the police.

Angami did not rule out the possibility of the crime being committed in some other place and the bodies then dumped in the area.

SDPO of Dimapur, Relo said one body was identified as that of Harlongbi Ingti, secretary of Karbi Students Association, Bokajan branch.

Ingti's brother, who came to Dimapur on learning about the discovery of the corpses, identified his body.

Relo said Ingti's family members lodged a missing report in Bokajan police station on January 1. He had not returned home since December 28.

Meanwhile, the apex tribal body in the state, the Naga Hoho, claimed that those killed were people from Karbi Anglong and condemned the killing.

Hoho general secretary Mutsikhoyo Yhobu tonight appealed to the government of Nagaland to immediately apprehend the culprits and urged all sections of the society to shun violence and maintain peaceful co-existence.

There was tension in Karbi Anglong district following the recent violence and imposition of curfew following the killing of six persons, including two militants.

Four persons, including three women, were killed by Karbi Peoples Liberation Tigers militants and in retaliation two ultras were killed by Naga Rengma Hills Protection Force while several houses were also torched on December 27.

Following the identification of the student leader's body, SMSes have started circulating around warning people from Nagaland not to head towards Assam, according to a report.

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