Assam: ULFA anti-talk faction blasts rail tracks



Guwahati: Ahead of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's visit to Assam, suspected anti-talk ULFA faction on Thursday blasted rail track in Tinsukia division, 463 km from here, in Sibsagar district but there were no reports of casualties.

Police said that the militants had blasted the rail track at a stretch between Bhoja and Longpotia stations.

None was injured in the blast, a North Eastern Frontier Rail spokesman said, adding that track restoration teams have been rushed to the spot.

Rail services have been disrupted due to the blast with railway officials halting Rajdhani, Kamrup Express and Inter-City trains at various stations.

Meanwhile, a power station was blasted at Kolakhowa area in Jorhat district. Police said that the cause of the blast has not been ascertained.

The incident late this evening came in the run up to a 12 hour bandh called by ULFA's anti-talk faction across Assam beginning at 0500 hrs tomorrow in protest against the Prime Minister's day-long visit to the state.

Rail services between Upper Assam and Guwahati have been affected due to the blast.

The blast blew up around three feet of rail track, rail sources said.

As security measures, Northeast Frontier Railway always run a pilot engine before any passenger train movement.

Before the Guwahati Inter-City Express was to pass the track, the loco pilot heard the blast at 9 PM heard the blast and informed the nearest station.

Earlier in the day, security personnel had defused a powerful Improvised Explosive Device from railway tracks in Chirang district.

The IED, weighing more than three kgs, two detonators and some fused wire were recovered at Maneswari, at a distance of about one km from Bijni railway station during routine patrolling by a joint team of the police and army personnel, official sources said.

PTI