No state govt wants continuation of AFSPA if situation improves: Himanta on APSPA repeal
In response to the growing demand of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) being repealed from Nagaland and northeast India, Assam chief minister, Himanta Biswa Sarma, on December 20, justified its continuation on the grounds that it should be repealed if the political situation is peaceful.
Sarma said, “No state government wants to continue the AFSPA, unless there is improvement in the law-and-order situation. I think the law should be withdrawn, if the situation is peaceful. Recently, the Arunachal Pradesh government withdrew the Act from the state, in consultation with the ministry of home affairs.”
The demand to revoke the draconian Act, a long-pending issue, has gone louder, following the firing incident at Oting village, Mon district, Nagaland, which cost the lives of 14 innocent civilians. Along with Nagaland chief minister Neiphiu Rio, the chief ministers of Manipur and Meghalaya, joined the chorus demanding the repeal of AFSPA, on the grounds of alleged misuse in insurgency-hit Northeast India.
Notably, the Assam government has extended the AFSPA in the state on September 11, 2021, for six months, with effect from August 28.
The law guarantees sweeping powers to security forces, involved in anti-insurgency operations.