Militants on Sunday ambushed an Assam Rifles vehicle, killing two security personnel and injuring three others, while two of the ultras were also killed in the ensuing encounter in Tinsukia district of Assam, days ahead of the Republic Day.
A defence spokesman told that militants threw several grenades at an Assam Rifles vehicle at Jagun 12th Mile Barabasti on NH-53 killing two security personnel on the spot and injuring three others.
The security personnel retaliated and two militants were killed in the operation which is still underway in the area, the defence spokesman said, adding that the area borders Arunachal Pradesh.
Following the encounter, the nearby Indo-Myanmar border has been sealed and helicopters have been pressed into service to spot militants hiding in the nearby thick jungles.
The entire area has been cordoned off and combing operations stepped up in the area, the spokesman said, adding tourists returning from the three-day Pangsau Pass festival, which concluded today, were stranded along the highway.
The Pangsau Festival is held along the Indo-Myanmar border in the area and the historic Stillwell Road which was a major theater of the Second World War.
Banned ULFA(I) in a statement claimed that it had carried out the attack along with four other organisations and had killed three security personnel.
A joint statement issued by ULFA(I) Commander Paresh Asom (Baruah) and Coordination Committee Chairman M M Ngouba claimed that the joint attack also injured two or more security personnel and were able to recover two AK and one INSAS rifles.
A joint Coordination Committee (CorCom) of Peoples Revolutionary Party of Kangleipak, Peoples Revolutionary Party of Kangleipak (Progressive), Revolutionary Peoples Front and United National Liberation Front and United Liberation Front Of Asom [ULFA-Independent] had undertaken the operation, it claimed.