Waari Singbul Network
A Norwegian woman of Myanmar origin, who was apprended by Assam Rifles (AR) near Manipur’s Moreh town with expired travel documents in August last year, is reportedly a top member of the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA), a rebel group fighting against Myanmar government.
Currently she is being kept in a safe custody by the state government in Imphal. Mya Kyay Mon (52) of Myaunk Pyin Mandalay in Myanmar and a permanent resident of Trondheim Sor Trondelag, Norway was arrested by AR personnel on August 9 from Khudengthabai in Tengnoupal district bordering Myanmar.
The rifles charged her of travelling without valid passport and E-visa and handed over to Moreh police station where she was booked under section 14 of the Foreigner Act .
A local court subsequently remanded her in police and later judicial custody till she was released on bail on January 6, this year by the sessions judge (Imphal West).
While granting the bail, the court, among other points, ruled that the accused (Mon) should not leave the state without permission of the court and should furnish details of her local residence to the concerned authorities, including the officer-in-charge of Moreh police station.
During interrogation of the accused while in custody, it was learnt that she is a high ranking cadre of KNLA Myanmar, sources said. KNLA is the military unit of the KNU( Karen National Union) which campaigns for the self determination of the Karen people of Myanmar, the sources said, adding that she joined the outfit in 2003 she got basic Military training for three months.
On October 23, she was found loitering at Ima market ( Mother market) in Imphal city as personnel of city police station picked her up, and following an order issued by the state home department on October 25, she has been kept at the Foreigners Detention Centre Imphal.
The order, while stating that she should be provided “ safe shelter and basic amenities,” said that she should be prevented from “ freely roam illegally without having VISA till the completion of any legal process in any court of law or any further deportation process (if any) as done in case of other illegal migrants.”
A source said that the woman had been putting up in different part of the state for about three months ahead of the ethnic conflict unfolded in the state in May.
Case documents said that the women arrived in India on April 24, 2019 with a valid passport and E-visa, but owing to Covid-19 induced lockdown , she could not renew her travel papers in Imphal.
Another source said that she, while staying in Churachandpur district, had filed a petition with the Manipur High Court recently with a prayer to quash the FIR filed against her by the Moreh police station.
She, according to the petition, came to India by duly obtaining an “ Indian visa on her Norwegian passport and have been travelling to Buddha Gaya on a pilgrimage and to various other state of India where there is poverty and destitute.”
“She also came to Manipur and stayed at the border town of Moreh and rendered her humanitarian services to the destitute persons in the remote villages,” said the petition. I
t said that she has been in the custody for more than the statutory period of 120 days and that the Norwegian government issued a new passport to her on October 13 last year. It is learnt that her petition is still pending in the High Court.