An unidentified gunman on Friday shot dead at least 14 people and wounded 15 in Balazan market area in Assam’s Kokrajhar, police officials said.
One militant has been killed during the gun battle with security forces.
The gunman opened fire at the crowded market in the restive town, about 220 km west of the state’s commercial capital Guwahati, superintendent of police, Sreejith T said.
The area has been cordoned off and security personnel are exchanging gunfire with militants. One AK-47 has been recovered from the spot.
The attack reportedly took place outside the Kokrajhar town and the place is said to be a crowded area. The site is three kilometres away from the Kokrajhar market and 3-4 militants are reportedly on the run.
Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal has already spoken to Prime Minister Narendra Modi regarding the matter.
Assam DGP Mukesh Sahay told that he was not in a position to confirm the exact number of militants involved in the attack. He said, “We don’t know who is behind it. The modus operandi indicates that it could be NDFB. Our men on the hot pursuit of militants”.
“He also said that three-four militants are still in the area and security forces have cordoned it off,” he added.
“This particular incident is unfortunate. This incident is very sad and we are shocked that so many people have lost their lives. We were very successful in ensuring peace in Assam. We will ensure that the victims are taken care of,” said MoS Home Kiren Rijiju.
Sources said the gunfight started at 11.30 am at the busy Balazan market when security forces were conducting massive anti-militant operation in the area.
The militants lobbed grenades and started firing indiscriminately at the security forces and the public.
The centre is rushing paramilitary forces to Kokrajhar to help Assam administration to tackle the situation.
Rajntah Singh tweeted that he spoke to Assam CM Sarbananda Sonowal and he apprised him of the situation in Kokrajhar. He added that his ministry is closely monitoring the situation.