3 killed in militant attack at Rly station in NC Hills

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Guwahati, Mar 25: At least three railway employees were killed and four others wounded, when suspected Dimasa militants hurled grenades at Harangajao railway station in North Cachar Hills district of Assam late last night.

The employees were huddled inside the small railway station, when the incident occurred. The station is about 22 kms from Haflong, the headquarter of the North Cachar Hill Autonomous District Council.

Official sources today said that there were no apparent reason behind the attack at the railway station as the Dimasa militants were extorting huge amounts of money from the two mega infrastructure projects of East-West Corridor of the National Highway Authority of India(NHAI) and Broad Gauge Conversion of NF Railway, periodically killing and kidnapping people involved with these projects.

Army and police personnel have been rushed to the spot. However, with extensive stretch of dense forests in the district, the militants have in the past managed to elude the security forces.

Unable to contain militancy in the district, which have hindered the progress of the two mega projects under hostage, the state government yesterday decided to buy at least eight bullet proof vehicles for the movement of the security personnel as well as of the employees of North Eastern Electric Power Corporation (NEEPCO) to their work site.

Assam Government has conceded that repeated strike by the militant group has severely crippled the implementation of the mega projects as most of the contractors have left the place fearing for lives.

Besides road and rail projects, there were also the hydel projects in progress in Kopili, which is being implemented by the NEEPCO. All of them have been severely hit by the frequent kidnappings, killings as well as regular extortions, most of which never come to the fore.

As the arrival of bullet proof vehicles would take more than three months, the trucks have been covered with metal sheets to protect the security forces as the hilly district have literally slipped into the control of the militants, forcing security forces to take rearguard position.

The security forces confirmed that at present the hardliner Black Widow groups were behind most of the violence as they were supported by the Naga militants stationed just across the hill.


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