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Rebels abduct Meghalaya legislator's brother

The brother of a Meghalaya legislator was abducted by suspected Garo National Liberation Army (GNLA) rebels in South Garo Hills area, bordering Bangladesh, police said on Friday.

No ransom call has so far been received by his family.

"Naga M Sangma, 39, the younger brother of Independent legislator Samuel M Sangma, was abducted by four suspected GNLA rebels about 7.30 p.m. last (Thursday) night from his house at Gasuapara area," Abraham Sangma, the district police official of South Garo Hills, told IANS.

Naga is also a coal exporter to Bangladesh from Gasuapara Land Custom Station, about 400 km from Shillong, the state capital of Meghalaya.

"I don't know the reason for his abduction. I have no idea if the rebels had served him an extortion note. I am on my way to Gasuapara to find out the exact details," Samuel told IANS on phone.

He added that none of his family had received any ransom call to secure the release of his brother.

Security forces, meanwhile, have launched a search and rescue operation.

The GNLA had earlier slapped extortion demands ranging from Rs.5 lakh to Rs.1 crore on petrol pump owners, coal dealers and businessmen in the coal-rich districts of the Garo Hills.

The GNLA is fighting for a separate Garoland in western part of Meghalaya.

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