PLA, MNPF claim responsibility for Manipur ambush

Manipur-based militant groups, People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and the Manipur Naga People’s Front (MNPF), have claimed responsibility for the attack on an Assam Rifles convoy in the state’s Churachandpur district.

The PLA and MNPF in a joint statement on November 13 night claimed responsibility for the attack, stating that they did not know that the commanding officer’s family was also in the convoy.

The commanding officer of the 46 Assam Rifles, Colonel Viplap Tripathi, his wife, their eight-year-old son, and four soldiers were killed in an ambush by militants in Churachandpur district of Manipur, close to the Indo-Myanmar border on November 13 morning.

“In the disturbed area, family and kid should not accompany. Chief of Army of PLA (Irengbam Chaoren) has congratulated the participating cadres in the operations,” said the statement, signed by both the militant outfits’ publicity in-charges.

The police said the incident took place at around 11 am near Sekhen village, as the heavily armed People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and Manipur Naga People’s Front (MNPF) militants opened fire on the convoy of Assam Rifles Colonel Viplav Tripathi, killing him, his wife, their 9-year-old son, three Quick Reaction Team (QRT) jawans and the driver on the spot.

The militants attacked the convoy when the colonel of the 46 Battalion of Assam Rifles along with his family members was going to supervise a civic action programme in Churachandpur bordering Myanmar, which shares around 400 km unfenced border with Manipur.

The slain Assam Rifles jawans have been identified as Suman Swargiary, Khatnei Konyak, RP Meena and Shyamal Das.

The Army, Assam Rifles and the Manipur police commandos led by senior police and para-military officials have launched a massive combing operation in the area to nab the militants.

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