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Home > News > Report

ULFA talks of political solution; Army talks tough

K Anurag in Guwahati | October 19, 2007 08:56 IST

The proscribed United Liberation Front of Assam, which is now reeling under sustained and intensified counter-insurgency operation by the Army -- especially in Eastern Assam areas and the two hill districts of the state -- has alleged that the government of India was interested in crushing the 'ULFA revolution' by using force and not at all interested in a political solution to "Assam-India" conflict.

The latest outburst by the insurgent group in the latest edition of its mouth piece, Freedom came following some 'tough talking' by GoC 4 corps of Indian Army, Lt Gen B S Jaswal, who is the operational head of the counter insurgency operations being carried out in Assam under the three-tier Unified Command structure involving the Army, police and the civil administration.

The General had made it clear that the army will need few more months for neutralizing the ULFA provided the ongoing operations against ultras continued unhindered. During the last few months, the army has virtually crushed the ULFA's main strike force, the 28th battalion through encounters and arrests of almost all the top level leaders of the ULFA battalion whose commander Prabal Neog too was arrested by the police recently.

The outfit's two other battalions -- the 709 active in Lower Assam areas and the 27th battalion active in central Assam and the two hill districts -- are also now facing the heat of army-police operations.

Facing the heat of intensified operations by security forces, the ULFA has started harping on its intention to have a political solution to the conflict, but the army is obviously in no mood to relax. It is evident from the statement made by Lt Gen Jaswal that there should not be any ceasefire with the ULFA unless the latter agreed to be lodged in designated camps leaving their weapons behind.

Chief of the Army Staff General Deepak Kapoor, during his maiden visit to the 4 Corps headquarter at Tezpur in North Assam on Thursday, had made it clear that the army will go back to barrack only if the banned ULFA agreed to come forward for peace talks with the government without any preconditions.

The government of India has all along been maintaining that any possible discussion with insurgent groups can be held only under the provisions of Indian Constitution.