The National Liberation Front of Tripura (NLFT) was formed in December 1989 for the purpose of seceding from India in order to create an “independent” Christian fundamentalist state of Tripura.
History & Foundation
Most wanted terrorist mastermind of the NLFT, Kamini Debbarma
The Baptist Church of Tripura was initially set up by Missionaries from New Zealand in the 1940’s. Despite their efforts, even until 1980, only a few thousand people in Tripura had converted to Christianity. Realizing this, the Church used one of its most efficient and time-tested weapons of evangelization – creating racial and ethnic divide among the people. In the aftermath of one of the worst ethnic riots, engineered by the Church, the NLFT was born in 1989 — but not without the midwife role of the Baptist Church. From its very inception, the NLFT has been advancing the cause of Christianity through armed compulsion. Every trace of indigenous culture and religion is being eliminated through violent means. Every resisting group is made to bleed its way to extinction.
Funding and Church Support
The National Liberation Front of Tripura (NLFT) is heavily funded by many Baptist Churches. Just a year before the Baptist Church assisted the foundation of the NLFT, they called for Christians to target the “millions of Hindus and Jews lost in the darkness” of their respective faiths. The NLFT is basically a violent muscle arm of the church and its missionaries.
Since the foundation of the NLFT, the Baptist Church has been supporting this violent campaign by providing funding and arms for the group. In April of 2000, Nagmanlal Halam, secretary of the Noapara Baptist Church in Tripura, caught providing 50 gelatine sticks, 5kg of potassium and 2kg of sulphur and other ingredients for making explosives to the group. Afterwards, Halam confessed to buying and supplying explosives to the NLFT for the past two years. In another incident in August of 2003, police arrested the Secretary of a Baptist Christian Missionary church in North Tripura District who was in possession of five kg of potassium, one kg sulphur, few gelatin sticks and 45 gm of high explosive materials.
In Tripura, such arrest and seizures of arms and explosives from the members of the Baptist church is a common occurrence and the link between the National Liberation Front of Tripura and the Baptist Church has been well established.
Atrocities and Attacks
Arms and ammunition of the NLFT recovered apprehended by the Central Police Reserve Force (CPRF)
There are too many violent acts of the NLFT to list but most involve kidnappings, extortion, mass murders, rapes, bombings and forced gunpoint conversions. NLFT seeks to severe all ties to the indigenous culture and religion of the state. Their militants have been known to shut down Hindu and Buddhist orphanages, hospitals, temples and schools as well as a establishing a ban on Hindi movies. In essence, they are the Christian equivalent of the Taliban. One attack of the many attacks that the population of Tripura has suffered under since 1989 is described below:
On December 4th, 2000, Christians converts under the direction of Missionaries, desecrated an ashram (Hindu religious retreat) set up by murdered Hindu leader Shanti Kumar Tripura. . They desecrated Hindu idols and destroyed photos of the slain religious leader revered by both Hindu tribals and Bengalis. The Christian converts also raped two female devotees and brutally attacked two men who had come to the ashram for puja (religious rituals).
The next day, Christian converts brutally desecrated another ashram at Jirania Khola and forced the inmates to stop all Hindu rituals and practices at gunpoint. A group of seven armed converted Christian terrorists barged into the ashram and threatened the 150 Hindus with dire consequences if they continued to perform Hindu rites at the ashram. The terrorists fled only after a large group of locals rushed to the ashram.
Due to threats by violent Missionaries and their Christian converts, altogether 11 ashrams, schools and orphanages set up by the murdered Hindu leader in various parts of the state have been forcibly closed down by the Christian fundamentalist terrorist organization known as “National Liberation Front of Tripura” (NLFT).
Additional Links and Ties
In addition to receiving heavy monetary and moral support from the Baptist Church, the National Liberation Front of Tripura (NLFT) has links with many Islamic jihadi groups. It receives training, advice and logistical support from many of these groups.
Furthermore, the majority of the NFLT terrorist training camps are located in Bangladesh which is outside of the jurisdictional reach of Indian security forces. The Islamic Bangladesh government has continually refused to crackdown on this and other militant groups.
Also, NLFT has links with the Inter Services Intelligence Agency (ISI), Pakistan’s external intelligence agency and its counterpart in Bangladesh, the Directorate General of Field Intelligence (DGFI). During 1997-98, NLFT leaders are reported to have visited Pakistan to receive training and arms from the ISI. The ISI had allegedly arranged the passport and visas for the NLFT leaders.
NLFT has also developed trans-border linkages in Myanmar and Bhutan. Besides these, according to Tripura police, the NLFT also works with other Christian, Islamic and Communist terrorist groups in the region including has also linkages with the All Tripura Tiger Force (ATTF), Nagaland-based National Socialist Council of Nagaland- Isak-Muivah (NSCN-IM), the Manipur-based Kanglei Yawol Kanna Lup (KYKL) and the National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB), which is active in the Indian state of Assam.