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Alert for Congress workers in Bodo belt
Published on 19 Jan. 2010 12:42 AM IST
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Assam Congress has asked its Bodo belt workers not to venture out after dark, shaken by two recent killings and police inputs that the Ranjan Daimary faction of the National Democratic Front of Boroland may target them. The warning comes ahead of the Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) elections, likely to be held in April. Party workers in the area have been told to strictly follow the “sunset law”. “We are also in touch with the police to provide security if they still have to go out after dark on some urgent work,” a party source said. PCC member Arun Sarkar was killed in Udalguri on Thursday, while another, Khagen Kakoti, was gunned down on Saturday in neighbouring Darrang district, prompting the alert from both the party and the administration. “Though there was no specific threat to partymen, even then they have been advised to remain extra vigilant given the prevailing situation. On Sunday, the district Congress committee held a condolence meeting in Mangaldoi and sought immediate arrest of those involved in both killings,” said Darrang district president Mujibur Rahman in Mangaldoi. Besides Darrang, alert has also been sounded in Sonitpur and Udalguri by police where Congressmen have been asked to remain on guard. It is understood that the Udalguri administration had sought additional forces following intelligence inputs about heightened militant activities in the BTAD and adjoining areas. A senior official in Guwahati said: “We have reasons to believe that both the (Congress) killings were carried out by the NDFB’s anti-talks faction.” He said the police were now working on drawing up a list of Congress workers in some of the districts where the outfit wields influence. “As soon as the list is prepared we will work out a security plan for them to nullify any attempt by the militants to target them,” he said. A PCC leader, on the other hand, said the party had been expecting such a turn of events in the run-up to the BTC elections. “Two factors are involved. One, our party government has gone all out against the Ranjan Daimary group and they are out to take revenge. Second, the upcoming BTC elections in which the outfit would want to play a crucial role. This could be also a warning to us that we keep out of the polls so that they can take on the Bodo People’s Front, which is headed by former Bodo Liberation Tigers chief Hagrama Mohilary.”

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