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Assam lukewarm to Black Widow's truce offer
K Anurag in Guwahati | March 29, 2008 21:36 IST
The tribal Black Widow militant group, which has been running riot in the North Cachar Hill district of Assam, has offered a unilateral truce with the government. However, the state government has preferred to adopt a wait and watch policy before responding to the truce offer.
The Black Widow or the Dima Halam Daogah (Jewel Garlosa), in a faxed letter sent to the headquarter of the Special Branch of Assam Police, offered a unilateral ceasefire with the state government and the Centre for a period of three months.
The militant outfit didn't cite any reasons for its sudden decision to opt for a ceasefire.According to an official source, the government will gauge the sincerity of the outfit's offer before responding to it.
As the government is taking its time to weigh the pros and cons of the militant group's offer, the operations against militants in the insurgency ravaged North Cachar Hill will continue. Security sources feel that the offer of unilateral truce from the Black Widow was a positive development towards finding a solution to the violent atmosphere prevailing in the hill district. They add that the truce offer may be a result of tremendous pressure on the outfit, due to the relentless operations by the security forces.
The Black Widow ultras have transformed North Cachar Hill into a virtual killing field. The outfit, which is involved in rampant extortion drives, has targeted the multi-crore Railway gauge conversion project, the East-West Corridor project of the National Highway Authority of India and the North Eastern Electric Power Corporation besides politicians, officials and traders in the hill district.
The Black Widow group, which is suspected to be enjoying the patronage of Naga rebel group NSCN-IM, has also killed several members of the ruling Congress party and security personnel.
A number of senior leaders of the outfit have been killed by security forces during the last six months. The unilateral truce offer from the outfit comes in the wake of the arrests of two of its senior leaders in Guwahati earlier this week.