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Vehicles damaged in blast

Shillong, Jan. 11: Two vehicles were damaged today when suspected militants hurled a crude bomb in Meghalaya’s West Garo Hills district. However, there were no casualties.

According to police, the low-intensity blast took place near the Hawakhana petrol pump near Tura, about 330km from here. The incident occurred around 5.50pm.

The vehicles which were damaged include a Tata Indigo and a Maruti 800. The occupants of the Tata Indigo were from Bongaigaon, Assam, and were in Tura on a business visit. Tura police have launched an investigation to nab those suspected to be behind the incident.

ANVC rift: Differences within the breakaway faction of the ANVC have surfaced following the threat by one of its leaders that the outfit’s cadres were ready to return to the jungle.

Yesterday, the outfit’s “political secretary” Ajaju R. Marak, had in a statement said, “We have refrained from all activities that could (cause) harm. We were only brought out to be made easy targets. We will truly return to the jungle and your government will face the music.”

He had also alleged that the sole intention of the Mukul Sangma government was to push the outfit away from the peace pact.

However, the outfit’s “publicity secretary” Doang D. Shira, in a statement issued today, said Marak was making “baseless accusations” to disrupt the peace settlement.

“He (Marak) is not authorised to make any decision on behalf of the ANVC (B). He deserted the organisation after posting his letter from our official mail yesterday, which was unauthorised. ANVC (B) will stay and not abandon the peace settlement,” Shira countered. He also urged the government and leaders of the society to support the ANVC (B) cadres who have come to join the mainstream, instead of making them feel insecure.

“The desperation of the cadres will only disrupt peace in the Garo Hills. We call for a sensible initiative from the government and leaders. The government should work out the safety and rehabilitation of the cadres,” he said.

At the same time, Shira said the “accusations” levelled by Marak and others were “ill-intended” with the sole objective of ruining the ongoing peace initiative.


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