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                        Vol.3, No.87 [*] November 30, 1998

       One thorn of experience is worth a whole wilderness of warning.
                           - James Russell Lowell

   The  United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) claimed responsibility of
   the killing of the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) personnel
   on November 27 and the explosions at Kopili and Tangani  on  November
   28,  as  part of its `Protest Day' which was observed on November 28.
   The banned outfit also claimed that seven CISF personnel including  a
   `sub-inspector'  were killed besides snatching away of seven guns and
   520 cartridges.
   In  two  days of violence, the ULFA blew up portions of a trunk crude
   oil pipeline, a rail bridge and a road  bridge  besides  killing  two
   persons -- an AGP leader and a SULFA man, and the seven CISF jawans.
   While the militants detonated time devices to blow up about four feet
   of  the  trunk crude oil pipeline over Kopili river near Dharamtul at
   about 11:30 pm suspending  crude  oil  to  Guwahati,  Bongaigaon  and
   Brauni  refineries  from  upper  Assam oil fields, the powerful blast
   also caused extensive damage to an adjacent railway bridge  resulting
   in disruption of train services.
   In  Darrang district, suspected ULFA militants blew up a vital bridge
   linking the national highway with time devices on the  river  Tangri,
   14 km east of Mangaldoi at around 11:45 pm on November 27, suspending
   vehicular  traffic  as  the  eastern  part  of  the  bridge was badly
   damaged.  Earlier on August 9 last year the militants  had  blown  up
   the western part of the bridge.
   An AGP leader of Kholagaon unit under  Jagiroad  police  station  was
   shot  dead  by suspected ULFA militants at around 7:30 pm on November
   27.  According to sources Goswami was watching the  TV  news  at  his
   residence when the militants called him out and shot him dead.
   Mr  Dhiren  Bora  (28),  a  surrendered  ULFA  activist was killed by
   suspected Maruti van-born ULFA militants at Muktapur,  four  km  from
   Bihata Chariali at 2:45 pm on November 28 near his residence.

   The  explosion  of  the  eight-inch  diameter  pipeline  transporting
   high-speed  diesel  from  Digboi  refinery  to  Tinsukia  Indian  Oil
   Corporation (IOC) terminal at Gutibari tea estate near Lakhipathar in
   Dibrugarh district on the night of November 26 was caused due to  the
   fire  caught  at  the  seepage  portion  of the crude and not by ULFA
   militants as reported in a section of the press, an official  release

   Seven  girl  students  of  B.H.College were killed on the spot and 16
   others seriously injured when the bus they were travelling in plunged
   into Tihu river at Nathkuchi after the bus crashed through  a  subway
   bridge railing at about 2:45 am on November 29.
   According to reports, the 52-member picnic party, comprising 39  girl
   students,  and  four  teachers  and  nine  others  boarded the bus at
   B.H.College campus and left for Amsoi at 2 am.  When the bus  reached
   the  Tihu  river  subway  bridge, the driver lost control and the bus
   fell into the river below.  According to sources, the driver  was  in
   an inebriated condition at the time of the accident.
   `It  is Daler Mehendi's Bhangra pop that did it,' lamented one of the
   injured who was admitted in the Nalbari Civil Hospital.  `As soon  as
   driver  started  the  bus,  he  put  one of those Daler's Bhangra pop
   number full blast in the  stereo  inside  the  bus,  and  sped  away.
   Scared by  his  act,  we appealed to him to slow down.  Probably, the
   driver was too drunk to heed to our appeal,' she said.
   However, local  residents  of  the  area  have  squarely  blamed  the
   district administration  for  the accident.  They said that a portion
   of the concrete bridge which was damaged in a bomb-blast by militants
   still remains without any repair  and  allowing  an  old  dilapidated
   subway bridge for traffic which resulted in the tragic mishap.

   Acting on a tip-off Army operating in Sonitpur  district  along  with
   police  personnel  nabbed  two  National Democratic Front of Bodoland
   (NDFB) leaders and a woman -- the self-styled lieutenant Ranba  Zulu,
   his  newly-wedded  wife and self-styled second-lieutenant D.Bedans --
   from Batasipur railway station at 9:30 pm while they were  travelling
   in Arunachal Express.
   According  to information, Ranba Zulu was going with a huge amount of
   cash for honeymoon with his wife.  Based on the information  provided
   by  the  arrested  militants  Rs.700,000  was recovered from Nizampur
   Basti near Dhekiajuli railway station.

   In a massive manhunt launched in Raha and its adjoining areas in  the
   aftermath  of the blowing up of a railway line and pipeline in Oujari
   village in Dharamtul  in  Morigaon  district  on  November  28,  Army
   arrested four suspected ULFA activists -- Mukut Rajkonwar, Boby Deka,
   Tagar Saikia and Ranjit.
   While in North Lakhimpur, two  ULFA  activists  associated  with  the
   publicity  wing  of Suwanshri unit of the outfit, Rajib Pachani alias
   Jayanta and Ajit Khatania were arrested by police from Bangalmara and
   recovered some incriminating documents from the ultras.
   In Guwahati, a huge quantity of gelatines, detonators and fuse  wires
   were  recovered  from  the  Brahmaputra  Mail at the Guwahati Railway
   station and arrested three Hmar activists in this connection at  4:30
   pm on November 29.  The Hmar ultras were travelling from New Delhi.
   In another incident Guwahati police recovered 985 gelatines  and  200
   detonators  from  two night buses at 6:30 pm in the Paltanbazar area.
   However, the miscreants who were taking the huge cache of  explosives
   managed to escape.

   Truck  drivers  of  Manipur  are likely to resort to a strike against
   extortion by Nagaon and Golaghat police of huge sums  of  money  from
   them, on  the  plea of requisitioning their trucks for the Army.  The
   extortions are mostly carried  out  at  Jagiroad,  Nagaon,  Dharmtul,
   Bokakhat and Golaghat.
   The  truckers  accompanied  by  a  group  of journalists from Manipur
   alleged that police have set up check points at  intervals  of  every
   seven  to ten kilometres between Golaghat and Jagiroad, only to catch
   the Manipur trucks.  They demand anything between Rs.500 to  Rs.3,000
   per truck and would detain the trucks if the drivers refuse to pay.
   The Manipur scribes said, if no action is taken by the Assam Police a
   against the policemen of Nagaon and Golaghat districts, the relations
   between  the  peoples  of  Assam  and Manipur will worsen because the
   national highway 39 in Assam is the lifeline of Manipur through which
   the essential supplies are ferried daily.

Compiled from newspaper and agency reports for private circulation only.
      [S=Sentinel, AT=Assam Tribune, Agencies = UNI, PTI, PIB]
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