ULFA battalion denies ceasefire reports

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Guwahati, Jun 17: The outlawed ULFA's '28th battalion' today denied having signed any ceasefire pact with the Centre and said any decision on cessation of hostilities would be decided by its top commanders.

'' The 28th battalion has not entered into any ceasefire pact and it is not authorized to do so,'' the battalion's 'A' and 'C' company 'commandant' Jiten Dutta was quoted by a local satellite channel.

A section of local print and electronic media had carried reports of a truce between the Centre and the 28th battalion, which is operative in upper Assam, yesterday.

The battalion's leadership was reported to have been allured with the promise of a financial package and the negotiations for the reported truce were stated to have been coordinated by the Union Home ministry.

However, Jiten Dutta today denied it over a telephonic conversation with a satellite channel.

The ULFA's power in upper Assam, where it was most dominant, had reduced significantly with enhanced security vigil and major successes by the armed forces.

As many as 22 ULFA cadres were killed in the recent weeks.

On reports that jailed ULFA leader Mrinal Hazarika was talking to the government on behalf of the outfit to prepare grounds for dialogue, Dutta said he was not aware of it.

And in any case, Hazarika's negotiations, if any, won't hold any significance for the outfit's top leaders in starting political discussions, he added.

The ULFA 'commandant' further added that the 28th battalion has not engaged in any violent strikes since March 16 and it had marked the ULFA's 'Raising Day' on April seven with flag hoisting only.

UNI

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