Major Split in ULFA Expected to Bring Peace in Assam
The state government’s effort to bring overground, a section of ULFA’s military wing, has ultimately paid off. Two out of three companies of ULFA’s most dreaded and potent battalion 28 have announced unilateral ceasefire on June 24, following surrender of 25 members (of this battalion) before the Army in Jorhat district of Assam.
Mrinal Hazarika, a former commander and 14 other leaders of Charlie and Alpha companies of battalion 28, announced a ceasefire in a signed statement faxed to media. This battalion has been blamed for the deadly strikes in Assam in recent times including attacks on Hindi speaking people.
In another breakthrough, 26 members from battalion 709 and 27 also surrendered at Tamulpur in Baksa district. Efforts are also being made to bring the Bravo company, of battalion 28, overground. Sources said that battalion 28 commander Bijoy Chinese and Bravo company commander Sujit Mohan were also considering joining the group, which issued ceasefire statement. ULFA is said to have four battalions, 27, 28,109 and 709 in all.
As per Hazarika and other leaders, they felt that a settlement could be reached across table and hence ceasefire has been announced. They have also appealed to ULFA Central Committee members (the top of hierarchy Arabind Rajkhowa and Paresh Barua included) to respond to the peace initiative taken by battalion 28. It is expected that this vertical split in ULFA would ultimately pave the way for a lasting peace, which had eluded Assam for the past thirty years during ULFA terrorism.
Tags: ULFA , Assam , Battalion 28
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