The audacious attack in Balajan Taniali in Kokrajhar which killed 14 civilians, was a handiwork of NDFB(S), a banned terror outfit active in Bodoland, sources in the Assam police have confirmed.
They say that the attacker killed in the encounter with security forces has been identified as Mwadan, a commandant-level operative of NDFB(S). Sources point out that even though the exact sequence of events is yet to be established, the security forces believe that two-three attackers were involved in yesterday's attack. While one was killed in the encounter, another two are said to be on the run. Operations have been stepped up with help of all the agencies, and the whole area has been put on high alert, informed sources.
Sources have told Catch that at least one NDFB(S) cadre has been arrested since yesterday. Whether he was involved in yesterday's attack is not yet known.
While NDFB(S) has been involved in a series of ghastly attacks in the past especially targeting other communities in Bodoland, yesterday's attack was the first instance where they attacked a mixed group. There were six Bodos among the 14 civilians who died in yesterday's attack. "We still don't know about the motivation for an attack of this nature," a source says.
Joint operations by the Army, Paramilitary, and the Assam Police which started in January 2015 have been largely successful in weeding out extremists from Bodoland. At least 86 NDFB(S) cadre have been arrested in the last two to three years, according to reports. Police officials also say that they have been able to disrupt the network of the terror outfit by apprehending couriers, busting their routes of supply of weapons et al.
Meanwhile, Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal is expected to visit Kokrajhar today.