Imphal, Nov 18, 2021, IANS
The November 13 terror attack in Manipur, in which an Assam Rifles Colonel, his wife, son and four jawans of the paramilitary force were killed, would be handed over for probe to the National Investigation Agency (NIA), Chief Minister N. Biren Singh said here on Thursday.
While delivering his speech at the 12th annual award presentation ceremony of the Manipur State Award for Literature-2020, the Chief Minister said that the case would be handed over to the NIA to reveal the actual details and identity of the perpetrators of the violence.
Manipur Governor La Ganesan and other dignitaries were present at the function.
According to a senior Home Department official in the state, Saturday's terror attack in Churachandpur district bordering Myanmar has many dimensions, hence only a central agency probe can unearth the genuine details.
"The issues related to the attack are not just limited to the northeastern region, but have possible international links and multiple dimensions," the official told IANS on condition of anonymity.
Armed with sophisticated weapons, guerrillas of the People's Liberation Army (PLA) along with militants of the Manipur Naga People's Front (MNPF) had killed Assam Rifles Colonel Viplav Tripathi, his wife, their nine-year-old son and four jawans of the paramilitary force in the November 13 ambush.
Security forces, including the army and the Assam Rifles, have been put on high alert in Manipur after Saturday's terror attack, the deadliest in the region.
After the incident, security forces recovered a large cache of powerful Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs), fitted to a mobile phone handset and digital watch, from three separate locations in Manipur.
Meanwhile, at the request of the Manipur government, the Union Home Ministry had last month asked the NIA to probe the assassination of influential tribal leader and social activist Athuan Abonmai on September 22 in Tamenglong district, bordering Assam and Nagaland.
After the widespread condemnation of the assassination of Abonmai by suspected militants of the National Socialist Council of Nagalim (Isak-Muivah), the Manipur Chief Minister had publicly apologized to the police inaction to protect the life of the well-known tribal leader.
Months ahead of the Assembly elections in Manipur, militant activities have increased in the northeastern state, forcing the authorities to ask the security forces to intensify vigil in the vulnerable areas.
Elections to the 60-seat Manipur Assembly are likely to be held in February-March next year, along with Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Uttarakhand and Goa.
Manipur shares around 400 km international border with Myanmar, and most parts of the frontiers are unfenced.