A Major, 3 militants killed in exchange of fire at Nagaland’s Mon district

An Army Major, three militants and a civilian were killed in a gunfight between security forces and militants on June 7 in Nagaland’s Mon district.

Three Army Para commandos were injured in the exchange of fire at Lapa Lempong hilltop in Oting village. One of them was flown to a military hospital in Jorhat, Assam in a critical condition.

The Army said an AK-56 assault rifle, two Chinese-made AK rifles, two grenades, three improvised explosive devices and 270 cartridges of AK-series firearms were seized from the spot.

The deceased officer was identified as Major David Manlun of the 164 Brigade of the Territorial Army. The identity of the three militants and the civilian are yet to be known.

Major Manlun, 32, belonged to Shillong. He was leading the Army operation. Commissioned into the 1st Battalion the Naga Regiment in March 2010, Major Manlun joined the battalion Naugam in Jammu & Kashmir and served there for two years and took part in a number of operations. After a stint in Himachal Pradesh, Major Manlun was posted in Nagaland.

Hundreds of people, including Meghalaya Governor Banwarilal Purohit and Meghalaya police chief Swaraj Bir Singh, as well as Army and Meghalaya police officials paid their last respect to the Major at his residence.

Acting on intelligence inputs, a combined team of Para commandos and Territorial Army ambushed the militants of the National Socialist Council of Nagaland-Khaplang (NSCN-K) and the United Liberation Front of Asom-Independent (ULFA-I).

“The militants hurled a grenade and fired at the operational team that led to heavy exchange of fire and subsequent deaths,” Kohima-based Army spokesman Colonel Chiranjeet Konwer said.

The civilian killed was an autorickshaw driver allegedly ferrying the militants.

“We are sad to hear of the tragedy. I am proud of my son. He has done his duty and given his life for our tomorrow,” Manlun’s father M Khamzalam, a retired Army officer, was quoted as saying by news agency IANS.

(The story was edited to add more information)

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