Every party in the electoral fray wants a ‘peaceful solution’ to the problem of insurgency in Assam. The problem was how get the insurgents to openly speak their minds, going beyond the rigid formulations of their manifestoes. After all, insurgents are, of necessity, elusive.
Not anymore, it appears. They now routinely keep in touch with the media, though still on their terms, claming or disclaiming responsibility for this or that action.
The ULFA for instance has an e-mail ID < firstname.lastname@example.org> taken in the name of Uddipta Hazarika, that is part of the history and mythology of the ULFA.
There was a time, when getting such a communication, or a call from an ULFA leader would make the recipient’s day.
In the mid-1980s when the ULFA seemed to have a free run in the State, one had to travel in the dead night through several cut-outs and changes of vehicles before one was escorted for an ULFA media briefing.
Now every accredited correspondent gets press handouts neatly typed on its letterheads by e-mail. How things have changed.