IED blast claims 2 cops

GNLA militants ambush police party near Tura

One more policeman injured

TURA: Suspected GNLA militants ambushed a police gypsy out on patrol duty on the Rongram-Dadenggre road triggering a powerful IED blast leading to the death of two police personnel and injury to three others on Friday.

This is one of the most brazen attacks by Garo militants so close to Tura. The police team had undertaken the patrol duty since Friday was the weekly market day frequented by traders from both inside and outside of Garo Hills. The blast took everyone by surprise.

The officer-in-charge (IC) of Rongram police outpost, 15 kms from Tura, was moving with four other personnel on patrol duty along the Dadenggre road when they were attacked near Tebronggre village, 6 kms from Rongram, shortly after 4:30pm .

As the white police gypsy, moving towards Dadenggre, was negotiating a right turn at Tebronggre, the blast was triggered.

“The IED explosion took place just as the vehicle took the turn and its impact was felt most on the back portion of the gypsy,” said senior police official B A Sangma after visiting the site of the attack.

The driver of the vehicle, Constable Lembartu Suchiang of Tura DEF, and two battalion constables Arphius Khymdiet and Rahul Marak sustained severe injuries as they came in the direction of the blast.

The IC of Rongram, P Rechil, who happened to be seated on the passenger side of the vehicle received shrapnel wounds on his hands but managed to get behind the wheel and drive the injured back to Tura for urgent medical treatment.

Unfortunately, constable Khymdiet died of his wounds while being transported to Tura while another constable Lembartu Suchiang of Tura District Executive Force, who was driving the police vehicle, passed away during medical treatment at the Tura Civil Hospital.

Both the deceased belonged to the 2009 batch of recruit constables.

Another critically injured battalion constable Rahul Marak has been shifted to Guwahati late Friday night for urgent medical treatment.

Baichung prime accused, detonator recovered: GNLA area commander of Tura region Baichung Momin has been identified as the prime accused in the IED attack on police party of Rongram on Friday.

The attack was orchestrated with the use of detonator wires and the militants are believed to have kept vigil on the Tebronggre road from a hillock of a tea garden.

“The IED was planted on the side of the road for maximum damage and that is why our personnel sustained head injuries,” informed a police official.

“We found a live detonator on the hillock where the militants lay. We will detonate it safely on Saturday,” informed Tura police officials.

Condemned: Meanwhile, Home Minister Roshan Warjri has condemned the incident saying “such acts of cowardice to derail the concerted efforts for building lasting peace and vitiating a hopeful atmosphere will not be accepted and tolerated.”

Extending her condolences to the bereaved families of BNC Alphuis Khymdeit and Lembadme Suchiang, she said that the ADGP Law and Order has been deputed to immediately leave for Tura to take stock of the situation.

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