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Manipur: PLA terrorists ambush 4 Assam Rifles unit near Myanmar border; 3 personnel martyred, 5 injured

In an attack by terrorists from the local militant group People’s Liberation Army, three personnel from 4 Assam Rifles unit lost their lives and five were injured in Sadiktampak village of Chandel district of Manipur around 3 km from the border with Myanmar, on Wednesday night. The terrorists first carried out an improvised explosive device blast and then fired at the troops who were returning to their post after three days of operation along the international border.

"On July 29, 2020, an area domination patrol in Khongtal, Chandel dist, Manipur. At 6:45 pm the patrol party got ambushed on their way back," a senior government officer said.

A group of 15 soldiers were returning from an area dominance patrol at Khongtal in Chandel area when an improvised explosive device exploded and they came under heavy fire from the members of an insurgent group, he said.

The martyrs have been identified as Havildar Pranay Kalita, Rifleman YM Konyak and Rifleman Ratan Salim. The injured jawans -- Subedar S Hoakip, Havildar Nitul Sharma, Rifleman Vivekanan, Rifleman Sandeep Kumar and Sepoy Anish Kumar -- have sustained "minor injuries" and are receiving treatment at the military hospital.

"The local administration and intelligence agencies are working to identify the insurgent group which carried out the attack on the patrolling party," the officer state.

The casualty on the PLA side is not known. A combing operation has been launched in the area by Assam Rifles and Manipur Police personnel following this attack.

Assam Rifles is a paramilitary force under the Union Ministry of Home Affairs and comprises the Indian Army soldiers and officers and their own cadre officials and officers.

A report published by the European Foundation for South Asian Studies (EFSAS) on June 23 stated that Indian insurgents from the country's Northeastern states, who have been sheltered for years in Myanmar, present security challenges for India.

"In addition to being threats to national security, they are also irritants that impact India's Act East Policy. The Indian suspicion, not without basis, is that impeding the progress of India's Act East projects has assumed weight in China's strategic thinking. The influx of Chinese weapons is, accordingly, in tune with such thinking," the EFSAS said.

In 2015, in an attack by Naga group NSCN (K), a total of 18 Indian Army soldiers were killed in Chandel district of Manipur. As retaliation, the force had carried out strikes on Myanmar hideouts of the group.

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