KOKRAJHAR: The gun battle ensued when the armed extremist opened fire at a crowded weekly market place, Balajan Tiniali market area. The terrorists came in an auto-rickshaw and started firing at a weekly market at Balajan Tiniali, around 220 km from Guwahati. One of the attackers also threw a grenade, setting off a fire at a building.
Fourteen civilians were killed in this terror attack in the heart of ASSAM’s Kokrajhar. Security forces in the area have killed one of the terrorists. Chaos arisen as people ran for cover, taking shelter wherever they could.
Several eyewitnesses recalled that one of the gunmen was wearing a “raincoat-like garment”. Santosh Narzary, a local trader, said, “I saw one gunman dressed in a black raincoat-like ‘gown’ and another sitting inside a tempo.”
Another shopkeeper, Kamakhya Rajbongshi, barely escaped death. “On hearing gunshots, I walked out of my shop. One of the gunmen looked me in the eye and fired at me, but the bullets missed me. I don’t exactly remember how I found my way out.”
Sudipta Roy, who was at the market with his friends, saw the attack unfold from a minibus parked at a safe distance. “A woman who was selling poultry at the market ran to a shop and knocked desperately, pleading to be let in. Suddenly, the (raincoat-clad) gunman turned in her direction and fired at her. She collapsed outside the closed door.”
Kiren Rijiju, Union Minister of State for Home Affairs of India, told the media, “We were successful in achieving peace in Assam and the Northeast but this (the terror attack in Kokrajhar district) is shocking.”