M A I N   N E W S

Centre puts north-eastern states on red alert
Manjula Bhattacharyya

Guwahati, October 7
After the Centre decided to dispatch 5,000 additional paramilitary forces and use helicopters to locate militants in Assam, Nagaland and adjoining north-eastern states, the entire North-East has been put on red alert.

The unprecedented violence that rocked Assam and Nagaland recently claimed around 75 lives and injured over 200. The blasts indicated resurgence of militant outfits like ULFA and the NDFB in Assam.

As part of its multi-pronged strategy to counter militancy in the North-East, the Union Home Ministry has advised all north-eastern states, particularly Assam, Tripura and Nagaland, to launch extensive anti-insurgency operation to flush out militants.

Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi is personally monitoring an anti-insurgency operation, presently being conducted by the Army, police and paramilitary forces, near the dense jungles at Dhubri in lower Assam. The operation will continue for the next 15 days.

Like Assam, the Government of Tripura, with help of the Border Security Force (BSF), has launched “Operation alert” to flush out militants of the All-Tripura Tiger Force (ATTF) and the National Liberation Force of Tripura (NLFT), which have links with ULFA and the NDFB.

The ATTF and the NLFT have already decided to observe October 15 as “black day”, as the day coincides with the date of merger of the state with India in 1949.

Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarker has reportedly discussed strategies with Tarun Gogoi to counter militancy in their states.

Both Gogoi and Sarker have been vocal on the issue of militants using Bangladeshi soil to organise the anti-India operations.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh yesterday admitted that the use of the Bangladeshi soil by some militant groups was a cause for concern for the country.

There are reportedly over 50 such camps spread in different parts of Bangladesh which aid and abet militants in the North-East.

Manik Sarker has openly charged the Pakistan-based ISI with providing assistance to these camps.

The Nagaland Government too is organising anti-insurgency operation to find out the persons behind the twin bomb blasts at the Dimapur railway station.

The bomb blasts on October 2 claimed over 35 lives.

It was learnt that the NDFB, which has links with the NSCN (Khaflang), may have a hand in the bomb blasts.

The NSCN (Khaflang) was reportedly not happy with the peace talks between NSCN (Muiva) and the Centre.

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