A leader of the Jana Sanghati Samity (Reformist or MN Larma group), a breakaway faction of the Parbatya Chattagram Jana Sanghati Samity, was killed while his lieutenant was injured in a gunfight between two groups at the Langdu bordering area in Baghaichhari on Sunday afternoon.
The deceased was identified as Pandob Chakma, a leader of the JSS reformist group that formed around 2007 and pledged to follow the path of late MN Larma, the elder brother of Shantu Larma, leader of PCJSS with whom the government signed the CHT Accords in 1997.
A team of army officers posted in the area have managed to recover the body of Pandob with bullet wounds to the head. However the injured accomplice, Arjun Chakma, remains missing.
Superintendent of Police Md Alamgir Kabir confirmed the matter but declined to comment further until the body of the deceased was handed over to police.
A police team was on the way to recover the body, he said.
Locals said Pandob, who was a front-ranking leader of the group, and Arjun were doing organisational work in the area on Sunday morning when they came under fire suddenly.
Although caught by surprise initially, the duo recovered eventually to retaliate with gunfire of their own.
During the gunfight, Pandob was hit and died on the spot but Arjun, 32, managed to escape despite receiving bullet wound, locals said.
It is not clear who shot at them. Over the last two years however, different political factions in the CHT –including the PCJSS, the JSS (Reformist-MN Larma), UPDF and UPDF (Reformist) have resorted to a string of assassinations to eliminate their opponents and establish themselves as the true representatives of the people of CHT.
In the past, most JSS (Reformist-MN Larma) member killings have been blamed on the UPDF, and vice versa. UPDF have also accused JSS (Reformist-MN Larma) of being in cahoots with their breakaway faction