TODAY -
AR team attacked, boy hurt in cross fire
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, October 29 2009: Suspected militant cadres opened fire on a team of Assam Rifles today at about 2.40 pm near Itam Thong on the Imphal-Ukhrul road under Lamlai police station.

In the gun fight that ensued a 16 year old boy was caught in the cross fire and was hit by a bullet on the left thigh.

The AR team from the 23rd Bn and 17th Bn, under IGAR (S), was returning from Somsai in Ukhrul, when they came under attack, though no one was injured.

Speaking to media persons at the spot, the leader of the team, Lt Col MS Bains said that they came under gun fire while they were approaching Itam Thong today.



The injured boy, the Maruti car used by the militants, youth working in field made to lie down on the roadside and the Bolero


The militants, numbering around four, opened fire towards them, from a Maruti 800 car, which was parked about 50 metres away from the bridge.

The Assam Rifles personnel also retaliated and later the suspected militants drove the car into a roadside paddy field and fled in twos in different directions.

The AR team was returning from Ukhrul with a Gypsy leading the way.

The convoy consisted of seven vehicles including two Gypsys, three Boleros, one 709 bus and another 407 bus.

With the Gypsy as the pilot vehicle, Lt Col MS Bains followed just behind in a Bolero.

The pilot Gypsy and another Gypsy along with the Bolero carrying the Lt Col as well as another Bolero were found riddled with bullets.

Providentially, no AR personnel was hurt in the attack.

However a 16 year old boy was hit on the left thigh in the exchange of gun fire.

The boy has been identified as Irengbam Itamba son of Kunjo of Pungdongbam Awang Leikai.

Talking to reporters, the 16 year old boy said that he along with a friend, Irungbam Okenswar (17) of Pungdongbam were on their way home from Lamlai, when they heard sounds of gun fire.

Fearing the worst, they turned back towards, Lamlai, said Itamba and added that he passed out and realised that he had received a bullet on his leg only after he regained consciousness.

Panic gripped the Pungdongbam Lamkhai area, with shops, hotels and other establishment quickly downing shutters during the shoot out.

About 11 youths, who were working in the paddy fields, were pulled up by the Assam Rifles and made to lie down on the side of the road for about one hour, said local people.

After the shoot out, the Assam Rifles troops launched a man search in the direction towards which the suspected militants had fled.

During the course of the search operation at about 3.30 pm, the AR troops saw some figures crouching and opened a fusillade of gun fire.

However later it turned out that the crouching figures were three women working in the field.

The shaken women, accompanied by the troops came out of the fields and went back home.


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