Just three days after the Chandel attack, about 50 NSCN(K) insurgents attacked an Assam Rifles camp on Sunday morning at Lazu in Tirap district of Arunachal Pradesh.
A top official dealing with insurgency in the Northeast told HT, “All the insurgents came in from the Myanmar side and fired at the Assam Rifles men from a distance. The idea was just to show their presence. There was prior information of the movement of insurgents and the men were prepared.”
It was also found that lathode guns were used in Thursday’s deadly attack on the 6 Dogra Regiment in which 18 soldiers lost their lives.
The use of lathode guns in the attack for which three underground outfits, NSCN(K), KYKL and KCP (Kangleipak Communist Party), have jointly claimed responsibility, is proof that the insurgents had come prepared with an effective plan.
A top security source told HT that the guns caused the vehicles to catch fire quickly, as a result of which several soldiers were charred beyond recognition. “Lathode guns, while not very useful for precision targeting, are very effective at close range ambushes against slow moving vehicles. The effect of lathode guns on vehicles with canvas toppings is deadly or so many soldiers would not have died,” the official said.
The guns, which shoot explosives over a distance, can be easily procured from arms dealers operating in Thailand and Myanmar. Most N-E insurgent groups have the guns, though not in huge quantities.
Two insurgents — Rajanglung Kamei, self-styled lieutenant colonel of the Nationalist Socialist Council of Nagaland (Khaplang group) and Amit, self-styled sergeant of the Kanglei Yawol Kanna Lup (KYKL), Meiteilon, for ‘The organisation to save the revolutionary movement in Manipur’ — were also killed in Thursday’s attack.
On the practicality of seeking Myanmar’s help to rein in the insurgents, the official said, “It won’t serve any purpose. Even if Myanmar’s top leadership orders attacks on the Indian insurgents’ bases, the local Myanmarese foot soldiers warn the insurgents. It has always been our experience in the past.”