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Govt removes AFSPA from parts of Nagaland, Assam and Manipur

Agencies

New Delhi, Mar 31: Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Thursday announced the removal of Armed Forces Special Powers Act from certain districts in Nagaland, Assam and Manipur.

The decision comes after a months-long campaign by various states in the Northeast to remove AFSPA, a law debunked for violating Human rights by rights groups.

The killing of over a dozen civilians in the Mon district of Nagaland last year triggered massive protests following which the Nagaland Assembly passed a resolution for the repeal of AFSPA.

Amnesty International has raised concerns that the AFSPA violates international human rights law, specifically the right to life, the right to liberty and security of the person and the right to remedy.

Amnesty says it enables violation of the right to be free of torture or ill-treatment as enshrined in the ICCPR.

“In a significant step, GoI under the decisive leadership of PM Shri @NarendraModi Ji has decided to reduce disturbed areas under Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) in the states of Nagaland, Assam and Manipur after decades,” Amit Shah said in a tweet.

“Reduction in areas under AFSPA is a result of the improved security situation and fast-tracked development due to the consistent efforts and several agreements to end insurgency and bring lasting peace in North East by PM @narendramodi government,” he added.

AFSPA can be imposed in an area or a region for six months at a time, after which it has to be extended if the government deems it necessary.

In March 2018, the MHA ordered the removal of AFSPA from Meghalaya completely and from eight police station areas bordering Assam in Arunachal Pradesh. A year later, this was further reduced to just four police stations. Arunachal currently has three districts with AFSPA apart from these four police stations.

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