NATIONAL

Gogoi seeks more Central forces to fight militancy

NEW DELHI, JAN. 31. Concerned over the recent spate of terrorist strikes and bomb blasts, the Assam Chief Minister, Tarun Gogoi, has sought additional Central forces to the tune of 59 companies for guarding the border with Bhutan and keeping a check on militant activities.

Mr. Gogoi who met the Union Home Minister, L.K. Advani, on Wednesday evening is learnt to have urged him to ask the External Affairs Ministry to take diplomatic initiatives and persuade the neighbouring countries to close down camps of North- East insurgent groups.

Mr. Gogoi apprised Mr. Advani of the camps of the outlawed United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) and National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB) and said that some recent killings were carried out by the NDFB militants operating from their Bhutan camps.

Insurgents were taking advantage of the hilly and forest-covered terrain along the Assam-Bhutan border to indulge in violent activities. As long as the border remained unguarded and unprotected, it would be difficult for the security forces to prevent such activities.

Mr. Gogoi also demanded that BSF be deployed immediately to guard the border and to ensure that construction of border roads and erection of border fencing should be taken up on a priority basis.

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