Seven Killed In Twin Blasts By ULFA In Assam

Suspected ULFA militants on Sunday triggered two back to back blasts near a police station in Assam's Nalbari district today, killing seven persons and injuring 53 others. The bombs strapped to bicycles exploded 15 minutes
seven killed in twin blasts by ulfa in assam -...
PTI November 22, 2009 22:07 IST

Suspected ULFA militants on Sunday triggered two back to back blasts near a police station in Assam's Nalbari district today, killing seven persons and injuring 53 others.

The bombs strapped to bicycles exploded 15 minutes of each other and 50 metres apart, Nalbari police superintendent Jitmol Doley said. 

Rumours of a third blast in the town were discounted by the police. 

The first blast which was of mild intensity occurred at at 9.55 AM while the second bomb, planted inside the iron rods of two bicycles exploded 15 minutes after causing the casualty. 

Though the ULFA has denied its involvement in blasts, calling it a "conspiracy by a section to derail the peace process", Inspector-General of Police (law and order) Bhaskar Jyoti Mahanta said ULFA was indeed behind the blasts caused by an IED strapped to the bicycles. 

The ULFA's 709 battalion commander and in-charge of lower Assam Hira Sarania told a local news channel that his organisation was not involved in the blasts which took place six days after it burnt down 12 oil tankers and derailed for bogies of a goods train in Sibsagar district. 

A senior police official said there were reports of a group of nine ULFA militants belonging to its 709 and 27 battalion entering the state to carry out subversive activities.

Four, including Pawan Thakur from Bihar, were killed on the spot while two others--Mohammad Ali, a village headman, and Secunder Ali--died on way to hospital. Another person succumbed to his injuries at Guwahati Medical College Hospital. He is yet to be identified, officials said. 

Of the 53 injured, some have been admitted to the GMCH, while three critically hurt victims were shifted to Guwahati Neurological and Research centre.

Chief minister Tarun Gogoi, who is in New Delhi, has refrained from identifying any particular insurgent group as responsible for the blast. 

"Whoever has carried out this crime has to be apprehended and punished. Although the police had prior information it, was difficult to protect every area," Gogoi said.

He instructed the admnistration to launch a vigorous search opeation to nab the culprits. 

Meanwhile, heart-rendering scenes were witnessed in the GMCH where most of the critically injured victims were admitted.

Utter chaos and pandemonium prevailed as relatives of the victims searched for their near and dear ones amongst the injured who were carried in trucks to the hospital.

"My injured elder brother, a cloth merchant, was to be brought here, but till now there is no trace of him," said Pijush Sarma, younger brother of a victim. 

Meanwhile, opposition leader and AGP president Chandra Mohan Patowary, has slammed the government, saying, "The blasts took place despite the police knowing that nine top ULFA leaders have entered the state to carry out subversive activities". 

Central government-appointed interlocutor P C Haldhar was in Guwahati last week to hold discussions with state government officials ahead of possible talks with ULFA. PTI

 
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