30 armed men abduct four in Sarpang

Eyewitnesses say about 30 unidentified men, well-armed with guns and khukuris (machete like knives), abducted four people from Norbugang village in Shomphangkha gewog, Sarpang at around 8 pm on August 7. According to a reliable source, no person in the village was physically hurt. There were no theft of material things either, but the armed men broke into the house of a 55-year-old man and kidnapped him and his son. The 55-year-old man and his son, an ex-monk, were eating dinner at the time. The man and his family are resettler from Wangdiphodrang.

Upon hearing the noise and commotion during the kidnapping, a neighbour, a 56-year-old man had gone to inspect the scene, when he too, was abducted by the kidnappers. The man lives with his brother’s son, a sixth grader.

Further, the armed men also spotted and kidnapped two male students who had came out of their house for bathing. The students, in the ninth and tenth grades, are enrolled in Sarbang Higher Secondary School.

According to the reliable source, at around 11 pm, the ex-monk, the son of the first victim was released and was instruted by the group to watch over the position of the police and army search teams, whereby the armed men promised to release his father.

After being informed, the police and army teams rushed to the spot, which is 15-20 minutes away from their posts. Meantime, with the help of village volunteers, they watched over the houses of the victims. The police and army tried to locate and follow the tracks of the group but could not get a hold of them. The police also received phone calls of another house in fear of being attacked by the armed men.  After which the police with additional force and Wing IX army stayed on guard of the village the whole night.

The police has informed the Indian Army SSP in the border area to look into the matter. The Indian Army has deployed their team to help search for the armed kidnappers. With the re-enforcement, the SSP are still in  a search operation as well as the Bhutan police and army in our locality, and a few suspects have been picked up.

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