Northeastern states alerted to likely terror strike

August 14th, 2011 - 5:20 pm ICT by IANS  

Agartala, Aug 14 (IANS) The central government has alerted the northeastern states over possible terror strike in the run-up to the Independence Day celebrations Monday and asked them to take steps to foil any attempt by militants to upset peace, police said here Sunday.

“The union home ministry has alerted the northeastern states to maintain a strict vigil in the run-up to the Independence Day and thwart any attempt of the separatist outfits to create violence,” Tripura’s Deputy Inspector General Nepal Das told reporters.

“The central and the state governments have also asked the Border Security Force (BSF) to tighten vigilance along the India-Bangladesh border to prevent trans-border movement of militants.”

“Central para-military personnel, accompanied by bomb disposal and dog squads, continued their search operations at airports, hotels, bus terminals, major markets and national highways,” Das said.

Four northeastern states — Tripura, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Assam — share a 1,880-km border with Bangladesh, while India and Bhutan share a 643-km unfenced border.

Twelve separatist outfits, including anti-talk faction of the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA), of Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, and Tripura have called a 17-hour general strike from midnight of Sunday and boycott the 65th Independence Day celebrations.

“We are fighting against the colonial India for this obligation of national sovereignty and will fight for it to the end,” a joint statement of the militant groups said.

Said the statement, e-mailed to media organisations: “The Indian government is trying to lure the people and the freedom fighters as well in the name of peace talk with the so-called Indian mainstream.”

“We have experienced futile promises of the governments in Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura, etc. and the present process of peace talks in Assam and Nagaland is nothing but dilly-dallying to our struggle of national self-determination,” it added.

However, police authorities in the northeastern states said they are not aware of any such boycott call.

The Northeast Frontier Railway has cancelled and rescheduled all night trains through Assam and Tripura since Saturday until Aug 17 for security reasons.

“All passenger trains running during night in Assam and Tripura have been suspended and many trains either cancelled or rescheduled and regulated till 5 a.m. Aug 17,” Northeast Frontier Railways chief public relations officer Subrata Hajong said in a statement.

Tripura State Rifles troopers arrested five armed youths during raids in western Tripura’s Kalyanapur Saturday night. Five locally-made guns, grenades and knives, along with subscription receipts for militant outfits were recovered from them.

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