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Ulfa eyes Upper Assam

Dibrugarh, Jan. 25: In a major shift in its military strategy brought about by circumstances, Ulfa has moved men from its 109 and 709 battalions to Upper Assam to carry out subversive activities around Republic Day.

The outfit’s 28 battalion operates in Upper Assam but the en masse surrender of two of its three companies has created a vacuum.

The outfit’s 109 battalion has been generally looking after logistics support for the movement of Ulfa cadres to and from Bangladesh through Meghalaya’s Garo hills. Its activities have been largely diluted by the Bangladesh government’s action on Ulfa militants taking shelter there. As a result, some of its cadres have reportedly entered Guwahati and its adjoining places.

The outfit’s 709 battalion is in charge of lower Assam, including Guwahati.

Sources said a 12-member unit drawn from the 709 and the 109 battalions and led by bomb expert Hemanta Rajbongshi from Nalbari had entered Upper Assam early this month and had been carrying out surveys to figure out possible targets.

“We are constantly trying to track them down. A few days ago, Hemanta’s location was traced near Digboi through mobile tower tracking. A search was launched but we have not been able to nab him,” a source said. Some “local agents” in Tinsukia and Dibrugarh had supplied explosives to the group, he added.

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