Militancy declining in Assam, says Gogoi

New Delhi, April 15 (IANS) Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi said Monday there was a declining trend in militant violence in the state.

He added that a coordinated action was needed with the northeast states like Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland and Meghalaya to stop transit routes, arms supply and shelters for militants.

“In the past few years, there has been a declining trend of militant violence and talks are on with several militant outfits. However, it would be over-optimistic to declare that the nightmare of militant violence is over,” Gogoi said at the chief ministers’ conference on public order here.

He said at a regional level, it was clear that coordinated action was needed in Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland and some parts of Meghalya if training, arms supply, transit routes and shelters of militants operating in Assam were to be choked.

Gogoi said that Myanmar remained a sanctuary for militants and there were efforts to reopen camps in Bhutan.

“The crackdown by the present Bangladesh government was a major factor in eroding the striking power of outfits like ULFA and NDFB, and we will remain forever grateful (to Bangladesh),” he said.

The United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) and the National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB) have for years run their training and refuge camps in Bangladesh.

“We have asked the government to increase the number of foreigners’ tribunals, initiating steps to update the National Register of Citizens, strengthening of the border protection measures and completion of border fencing,” he said.

He added that a longer term policing solution will need a more extensive police presence in hitherto unserved areas.

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