'Operation Clear' launched by the Army to wipe out the ULFA's potential to carry out strikes and flush out the insurgents from their hideouts has succeeded in apprehending five ultras from different parts of upper Assam.
Two ULFA extremists were apprehended during search operations at Tingrai while another two were picked up from Naholia area in Dibrugarh district, defence sources at the Army 4 Corps headquarters in Tezpur said.
The troops also apprehended an ULFA overground worker at Nipunkheti of neighbouring Tinsukia district along with medical instruments like a blood pressure measuring machine and a stethoscope, 75 copies of the outfit's mouthpiece Swadhinata, a combat dress and 100 liquor bottles.
The Army had on Friday achieved its first success in the intensified operation launched since Wednesday by killing a cadre in lower Assam even as the troops stormed reserve forests in the state and neighbouring Arunachal Pradesh in search of the outfit's camps there.
The state's international and interstate borders were also sealed to prevent the insurgents from escaping to neighbouring Bhutan and Myanmar, where they were believed to have training camps, official sources said.
Combing is on in the dense Namchangmukh and Charaipung reserve forests on the bank of river Buridihing in upper Assam and Manabhum reserve forest in Arunachal Pradesh, where ULFA militants are believed to have taken shelter after carrying out the carnage in upper Assam killing 70 Hindi-speaking people.
The remote reserve forests are also being searched for possible ultra hideouts used as escape route to Myanmar, besides the rural areas, the sources added.