3 killed in blast on ULFA's 'Army Day'

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Guwahati, Mar 16: At least three persons were killed and nearly 50 injured in an ULFA-engineered blast at Jonai in Assam's Dhemaji district just after midnight last night. District administration sources informed here today that the blast went off after midnight at Jonai where hundreds of people of the Mising community had gathered to celebrate 'Ali-Aie-Lrigang'.

One person died on the spot while two others succumbed later following the blast on the proscribed ULFA's 'Army Day'. Besides, 14 others, who were critically injured, were shifted to the Assam Medical College and Hospital in Dibrugarh, with the toll likely to rise. Nearly 30 others who received minor injuries were admitted at the Dhemaji civil hospital.

The outfit had killed 13 people, including seven children, in a blast during Independence Day celebrations in Dhemaji in 2004. The outlawed ULFA is observing its 'Army Day' today to commemorate the raising of its armed wing.

Security had been enhanced across the state ahead of the day as the outfit is known to strike during this day.

The security forces had also raised major offensives against the outfit with as many as two ULFA militants gunned down yesterday while four others had a narrow escape, even as six others surrendered.

Two militants were killed in Silikhapathar in North Lakhimpur district, while four hardcore rebels of the ULFA managed to escape following an hour-long encounter in Tinsukia district.

Six rebels, on the other hand, linked with blasts in the capital city, had surrendered in Guwahati.

UNI

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