Assam Massacre: Bodo militants gun down 48 tribals; curfew imposed, state on red alert

Share this

Guwahati, December 24: Suspected Bodo militants on Tuesday killed 48 innocent tribals and injured more than 80 in a series of attacks at four places in Sonitpur and Kokrajhar districts of Assam. 

At least 48 civilians killed  when heavily armed militants launched simultaneous attacks on civilian settlers in four different locations spread in two Assam districts, Kokrajhar and Sonitpur on Tuesday evening, December 23, 2014. The toll is likely to rise. Unconfirmed reports put the toll over 50, The Assam Times reported. 

Police said that 10 others were also injured in the attack unleashed by heavily armed militants belonging to the Songbijit faction of National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB) that is opposed to peace talks.

Men,women and children were shot dead with AK-47 bullets in five attacks within the space of an hour in the Sonitpur and Kokrajhar districts, the police said.

Those killed were mostly tribals who worked in tea gardens in the region. The number of dead could rise as many people were critically wounded.

Thirty three have lost their lives in Sonitpur, while 14 were killed in Kokrajhar. Indefinite curfew has been imposed in five police station areas of Sonitpur district. IGP (Law and Order) SN Singh said that militants of NDFB (Sangbjit group) attacked civilians at Dhekiajuli and Jinjia areas in Sonitpur and Ultapani and Serfanguri areas in Kokrajhar last evening.

Assam CM Tarun Gogoi directs senior ministers Nilamani Sen Deka, Basanta Das to visit Kokrajhar district.

He also directs ministers Rockybul Hussain, Prithbi Majhi & Tanka Bahadur Rai to visit Sonitpur district following the Assam Massacre

Prime Minister Narendra Modi condemned the killing of innocent people as an act of cowardice. "Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of the deceased," he tweeted on Tuesday.

PM Modi tweeted, 

PM Modi said he spoke to Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh. "Rajnath ji will travel to Assam and take stock of the situation," he said.

Singh said killing of innocent people for any cause can never be justified. The Centre is monitoring the situation and the paramilitary forces have been rushed to the spot, he tweeted.

Singh said he spoke to Gogoi who apprised him of the situation. Centre will provide all assistance to the state, he added.

Who are Bodo militants?                         

Bodo militants belong to the National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB) is an armed separatist outfit which seeks to obtain a sovereign Bodoland for the Bodo people in Assam, India. It is designated as a terrorist organization by the Government of India.

Formed in 1998, the group carried out several attacks on civilians in Assam, targeting non-Bodo civilians as well as the security forces. In May 2005, it signed a ceasefire with the Government, but some of its factions continue to indulge in militancy.

NDFB claims to be a representative of the Bodo people, who form around 10% of Assam's population. The main grievances of the group are the under-development in the region and the influx of immigrants. It aims to address these issues by seceding from India, and establishing a sovereign Bodoland.

A spokesperson of Assam Police said 30 persons were gunned down in Sonitpur district alone, while four were killed in Kokrajhar on Tuesday evening.

"In Sonitpur district, 30 people have been killed--24 were gunned down in Biswanath Chariali and six were killed in Dhekiajuli," the spokesperson said.

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh condemned the killing of innocents of by the banned outfit National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB) in Kokrajhar and Sonitpur districts of Assam. Singh took to twitter for expressing his concerns.

In Kokrajhar district, four deaths have been confirmed at Pakhiriguri, while three more are suspected to have been killed at the interior place of Ultapani, he said. Police are yet to recover the bodies from Ultapani.

"All these people were killed in serial attacks by suspected militants of National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB) (Songbijit)," the official said.

All those killed in Sonitpur attack were stated to be Adivasis, said Superintendent of Police Sanjukta Parasar. A group of NDFB(S) militants with sophisticated arms fired at people in Sonajuli under Biswanath Chariali sub-division in Tinisuti near the Arunachal Pradesh border, she said.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley also expressed his concerns on tweets,

In this attack, 24 persons were killed and six others injured, she said. The incident site is located very near to the inter-state border between Assam and Arunachal Pradesh.

Copyright © Bharati Web Pvt.Ltd. All Rights Reserved