Days after footage of a Naga rebel leader's son and his bride posing with automatic rifles at their Dimapur wedding reception sparked a controversy in Nagaland, the state police arrested them under provisions of the Arms Act on Wednesday. The two, however, were later released on a bail bond.
The police action, reportedly taken following the intervention of the state governor's office, comes at a time when the centre is trying to close a historic peace deal with Naga rebel groups in the northeast.
Ahito Kiho, the son of top National Socialist Council of Nagaland-Unification (NSCN-U) leader Bohoto Kiba, and his bride had posed with AK56 and M16 rifles at their wedding reception on November 9 - shocking guests invited to the event. Police said that Aro Sumi and Mughaho, two NSCN-U cadres who had provided them with the firearms, have been arrested and will be produced in a court soon.
The weapons have been seized.
Police reportedly jumped into action only after the video was circulated widely on social media in the following days. According to sources, Nagaland Governor RN Ravi - who is also the centre's interlocutor in the peace talks - took note of the development and asked the state police to act.
Meanwhile, official sources said that this public display of firearms by a member of the rebel faction was also in violation of its ceasefire agreement with the centre. The matter could be placed before Lt Gen Shokin Chauhan, the chairman of the Cease Fire Monitoring Group and the Cease Fire Supervisory Board, they added.
Bohoto Kiba had earlier courted controversy by threatening journalists in 2012.
The NSCN-U was formed by breakaway leaders of the Socialist Council of Nagalim (Isak-Muivah) and the Myanmar-based Socialist Council of Nagaland (Khaplang). It is one of the seven Naga groups holding peace talks with the government.