Monday, April 12, 2010

Maoists using ULFA links: Gogoi

12 Apr 2010, 1638 hrs IST,PTI

GUWAHATI: Maoists have links with the outlawed United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) and are desperately trying to set up a base in Assam as part of their strategy to spread their network beyond the eastern region, Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi said here Monday.

"There is no doubt about it that Maoists have links with the ULFA and are trying their level best to spread their network and reach Assam. But we are alert and hence a stepped up security measure to thwart and such dangerous trend,"
the chief minister told.

Gogoi said there were reports of the ULFA and the Maoists trying to trade in arms and explosives.

"There is definite understanding between the two sides and also reports of arms sale and other such things," the chief minister said.

There were earlier intelligence reports indicating that a shadowy insurgent group in Assam, the Adivasi National Liberation Army (ANLA), had established links with Maoist rebels, with several of its cadres said to be undergoing training at the hands of Maoist instructors, mainly in Jharkhand.

ANLA, formed in 2004 to push the interests of tea plantation workers across the state, shot into the limelight after it claimed responsibility for the Dec 13, 2007 bomb attack on a New Delhi-bound Rajdhani Express in eastern Assam that killed five passengers and injured nine others.

The chief minister also told reporters that military operations against the ULFA were going on in full steam after the rebel group late Sunday killed a policeman and injured another in the eastern district of Dibrugarh.

"We have reports that the ULFA is recruiting cadres and trying to make their presence felt. Our operations are on and there is no let down in our efforts and at the same time we are keeping our doors for peace talks open,"
Gogoi said.

"There has been some forward movement in peace talks, but we would like all those outside the country to come and join any peace initiative."

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