Shillong: Five migrant labourers were shot dead and few others were injured when suspected tribal militants indiscriminately fired upon them in a remote mining village in Meghalaya's South Garo Hills district, the police said on Tuesday.

Suspected United Achik Liberation Army (UALA), a breakaway faction of the Achik National Volunteer Council-B faction, led by one Norrok Momin went to the mining camp at Darangdura village on Monday evening and fired at the labourers, the police said.

The militants came to the quarry and pushed the labourers to one corner before opening fire on them from their automatic rifles resulting in the death of five workers and injury to others, who fled from the camp.

Police suspected that the shooting was a result of non-payment of extortion by the mine owner.

According to the police, the militants had served extortion notice to the mine owner several times to which he did not pay heed.

The police rushed to the village, located about 10 km from Nangalbira area, and took stock of the situation.

The police have intensified vigil in and around the camp area and launched a manhunt to nab those involved in the criminal act, Davis Nestell R Marak, district police chief said.

Several militant outfits have mushroomed in five districts of Garo Hills affecting the law and order situation.

(Agencies)

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