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7 militant groups active in State

By Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, March 29 � Seven militant groups are active in Assam at present and the Government has not taken any decision to withdraw the unified command structure created in 1997 for launching coordinated operations against militants. This was disclosed by Forest Minister Rockybul Hussain in written replies to separate questions by Uddhab Barman (CPM) and Anup Phukan (AGP) in the State Assembly today.

Hussain, who was replying on behalf of the Chief Minister, said that among the active militant groups, the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) has a strength of 875 members, while, the anti-talk faction of the NDFB has 225 members, AANLA has 30 members, Kuki Revolutionary Army has 40 members, Hmar People�s Convention has 50 members, Muslim United Liberation Tigers of Assam has 110 members and Assam unit of the Harkat ul Mujaheedin has 45 members.

Giving an account of the steps taken by the Government to control the situation, the Minister said that the Unified Command structure is active in the State for launching coordinated operations against militants. He said that the Government has adopted a four pronged strategy to deal with militancy � relentless operations against militants, persuading disillusioned militants to lay down arms and join the mainstream, psychological war against militancy and peace initiative and dialogue with the militant groups for permanent solution of the problems. He revealed that the BSF and SSB are engaged in checking trans border movement of militants from Bangladesh and Bhutan.

The Minister informed the House that in the last two years, 535 persons including 494 civilians and 41 security force personnel were killed by militants, while, during the same period, 333 militants were killed by security forces in counter-insurgency operations.

Hussain revealed that three militant groups-UPDS, DHD and NDFB are in suspension of operation with Central and State governments, two �Bircha Commando Force and Adivashi Cobra Militants of Assam are in suspension of operation with the State government and two others- DHD(J) and KLNLF laid down arms to join the mainstream. He said that 18 designated camps have been set up to keep the members of the militant groups under ceasefire.

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7 militant groups active in State

GUWAHATI, March 29 � Seven militant groups are active in Assam at present and the Government has not taken any decision to withdraw the unified command structure created in 1997 for launching coordinated operations against militants. This was disclosed by Forest Minister Rockybul Hussain in written replies to separate questions by Uddhab Barman (CPM) and Anup Phukan (AGP) in the State Assembly today.

Hussain, who was replying on behalf of the Chief Minister, said that among the active militant groups, the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) has a strength of 875 members, while, the anti-talk faction of the NDFB has 225 members, AANLA has 30 members, Kuki Revolutionary Army has 40 members, Hmar People�s Convention has 50 members, Muslim United Liberation Tigers of Assam has 110 members and Assam unit of the Harkat ul Mujaheedin has 45 members.

Giving an account of the steps taken by the Government to control the situation, the Minister said that the Unified Command structure is active in the State for launching coordinated operations against militants. He said that the Government has adopted a four pronged strategy to deal with militancy � relentless operations against militants, persuading disillusioned militants to lay down arms and join the mainstream, psychological war against militancy and peace initiative and dialogue with the militant groups for permanent solution of the problems. He revealed that the BSF and SSB are engaged in checking trans border movement of militants from Bangladesh and Bhutan.

The Minister informed the House that in the last two years, 535 persons including 494 civilians and 41 security force personnel were killed by militants, while, during the same period, 333 militants were killed by security forces in counter-insurgency operations.

Hussain revealed that three militant groups-UPDS, DHD and NDFB are in suspension of operation with Central and State governments, two �Bircha Commando Force and Adivashi Cobra Militants of Assam are in suspension of operation with the State government and two others- DHD(J) and KLNLF laid down arms to join the mainstream. He said that 18 designated camps have been set up to keep the members of the militant groups under ceasefire.