A little-known outfit Adivasi People's Army (APA) has laid claim to be behind Sunday's bomb attack on the Guwahati-Puri Express train in western Assam, police sources said.
"At this moment, we are not ruling out any the involvement of any of the other outfits. While the APA has claimed to have caused the blast, it is yet to be verified," Apurba Jibon Baruah, superintendent of police, Kamrup (Rural) told HT.
The explosion took place at about 8:30 pm on Sunday night near Dhatkuchi located between the Rangia and Ghagrapar rail stations in west Assam leading to the derailment of the Guwahati-Puri Express. About 105 passengers have been injured.
A big crater has filled in the area of the explosion. Police also detected some fuse wire leading to the nearby bushes.
Set up in 2006, the little-known APA has been known to be trying to stage attacks to announce its arrival into the big league in the area which is otherwise known to be the turf of the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) and the National Democratic Front of Bodoland.
Led by Tarzen Mardi, the about 50-cadre strong APA is known to be active in Sonitpur and Kokrajhar areas of the state.
With its support base among the tea tribes, this outfit is known to have links with both the ULFA and the NDFB.
According to sources, APA has also been trying to establish connections with the Maoists in Jharkhand where a few cadres are reported to have been sent for training purposes.
A hardline outfit, the outfit leaders have reportedly told its cadres that they will not end up like the other militant outfits in the northeast that have ongoing ceasefire agreements with the government or have come forward for talks.