GUWAHATI: Five commandos of the elite 21 Para were injured in an ambush by the insurgents in Manipur’s Chandel district on Saturday morning. Two of them reportedly suffered severe injuries.
The attack was carried out at around 9 am at Khangtal village on the India-Myanmar border. The commandos were on a foot patrol when the militants triggered an IED blast and fired indiscriminately from automated weapons.
“A team of the commandos had gone to a remote area on the Myanmar border two days ago to carry out an operation against the militants following receipt of information about their movement there. Today (Saturday), while they were returning on foot, the militants ambushed the personnel at Khangtal village. Five commandos were injured, two of them critically, in the incident,” defence sources told Express.
They said the commandos also retaliated leading to a gunfight which lasted for a few minutes. Later, the militants escaped taking advantage of the forested area.
All the injured personnel were airlifted to the military hospital at Leimakhong, near Manipur capital Imphal.
Meanwhile, the Coordination Committee (CorCom) and the Paresh Baruah faction of outlawed United Liberation Front of Assam (ULFA) jointly claimed responsibility for the attack, which they codenamed “Barak”. CorCom is a conglomerate of Manipuri insurgent outfits.
In a joint statement, CorCom’s joint military commission chairman MM Ngouba and ULFA military chief Paresh Baruah hailed the rebels for the successful operation.
Last year, several insurgent groups of the Northeast came under a common platform with the formation of United National Liberation Front of WESEA (UNLFW). The outfits have their camps in the jungles of Myanmar.
As many as 18 army personnel were killed and several others injured in an ambush by the militants of SS Khaplang faction of Naga insurgent group National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN-K) in this Manipur district last year.