Suspected militants of the anti-talk faction of the National Democratic Front of Boroland (NDFB) on Wednesday made an attempt on the life of the spokesman of the rival faction in northern Assam’s Udalguri district, even as special teams of the Army, police and CRPF continued searches in lower Assam for the sixth day to trace abducted engineer P. Krishna Rao, who hails from Andhra Pradesh.
The police said two motorcycle-borne youth fired several rounds at S. Sanjarang, who was riding pillion on a motorbike at a market place in Udalguri. He sustained bullet wounds on the left leg and left arm and was admitted to a private hospital here.
In lower Assam’s Kokrajhar district, the abduction of Mr. Rao by suspected militants of the anti-talk faction of the NDFB has slowed down the work on the East West Corridor Project of the National Highway Authority of India, with the construction company for which Mr. Rao works suspending the night shifts.
S.N. Raju, Deputy General Manager, Gayatri Project (JV), told The Hindu that along with the family members, the company officials, employees and workers were anxiously awaiting the safe return of Mr. Rao, who was abducted on October 16.
“We have not received any phone call or message informing us about the whereabouts of Mr. Rao. He is a diabetic and hypertension patient. So we are more worried about his health as he would not have the medicine with him. We hope that the kidnappers will release him immediately. Even as we are awaiting his safe return, we have been continuing with the construction work during the day time and suspended night shift as a precautionary measure,” Mr Raju said.
Top officials of the company were in constant touch with the family members, he said.
The abduction prompted many officials and engineers of the company to seek leave, informed sources said.
Superintendent of Police of Kokrajhar district P.K. Dutta said search operations were on, but there was no trace of the engineer. The police did not receive any information about the kidnappers trying to get in touch with either the family members or the construction company.
A panchayat leader of the Opposition Assam United Democratic Front (AUDF) was shot dead by gunmen in lower Assam’s Barpeta district.
The locals nabbed one of the four youths allegedly involved in the incident. The AUDF has called for a district-wide bandh for Thursday to protest against the killing.