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HVK Archives: ULFA runs hotels and schools in Bangladesh, says report

ULFA runs hotels and schools in Bangladesh, says report - The Indian Express

Samudra Gupta Kashyap ()
October 26, 1998

Title: ULFA runs hotels and schools in Bangladesh, says report
Author: Samudra Gupta Kashyap
Publication: The Indian Express
Date: October 26, 1998

What does the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) do with the
money it extorts from big business houses and the common man?
According to the Union Home Ministry the outfit has set up a
number of money-spinning companies in Bangladesh, ranging from
hotels to poultry farms.

If one goes by leeding Assam: The Role of the ULFA a Home
Ministry report, apart from Dhaka, the ULFA has also begun
business projects in other Bangladeshi towns like Sylhet
Mymensingh and Narsingdi. "In Dhaka, the ULFA owns three hotels,
one private clinic and two motor driving schools. In Sylhet
district, it has several grocery and drug stores. In Mymensingh,
it owns some poultry farms while in Narsingdi, it runs two
schools," the report says.

The report, which was recently distributed by the ministry at a
meeting of NGOs in Shillong, also say that ULFA general
secretary Anup Chetia - now lodged in a Dhaka jail - is in
charge of all the projects.

The Home Ministry report says that the ULFA generates a lot of
money from these projects, and it is these funds that enable its
leaders like chairman Arabinda Rajkhowa and commander-in-chief
Paresh Barua to live luxury in Bangladesh and elsewhere.

For instance, Anup Chetia, who was arrested in Dhaka on December
21 last year, had been travelling extensively before his arrest.

Among the places he has visited are Brazil and South Africa
where he is said to have spent lavishly.

The United Liberation Front of Asom, the report says, has also
set up a profitable narcotics business following its tie-up with
the NSCN (K) which has led to contacts with the Kachin
Independent Army (KIA). "They (ULFA leaders) are also developing
links with ex-drug baron Khun Sa's disbanded Mong Tai army, both
for procurement of arms and for narcotics conduit," it says.

The Home Ministry report also talks of the expensive lifestyles
of United Liberation Front of Asom leaders and also of their
families.

It also says money is being extorted from business houses and
the common people for "the personal benefit of the luxury-loving
United liberation Front of Asom leaders basking in luxurious
villas and five-star hotels m foreign cities like Geneva and
Bangkok." But surprisingly, though the Ministry claims that the
report is being released "in Assam's public interest", it has
been printed and distributed only in English language.


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