TODAY -

NFIW to press for removal of AFSPA from Manipur
Source: Hueiyen News Service

Imphal, December 13, 2011: The National Federation of Indian Women (NFIW) has vowed to relentlessly put pressure on the Union government to remove the Draconian Law, Armed Forces Special Powers Act, 1958, from the state of Manipur.

Addressing media persons here at Manipur Press Club today, Annie Raja, General Secretary, NFIW, said that the NFIW has taken up mobilization campaigns in different parts of the country in support of Sharmila Chanu who has been fasting for the last 11 years, demanding removal of AFSPA.

But, unfortunately, there are a number of people who are unaware of the agitation carried out by Sharmila Chanu.

The NFIW will further carry out different forms of campaigns after its Imphal visit.

She further said, "It is easily comprehensible that more than 10 years of fasting by Sharmila as well as the nude protest staged by a group of women in front of Kangla here showed the extent of atrocities being committed by security forces under the AFSPA".

AFSPA is a political question and it should be solved only through political means, she added.

The Delhi based women rights activist said the controversial Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) should not be used as a tool to curb insurgency in any part of the country because the Act is anti-democratic, unconstitutional and rampant violation of human rights takes place under its cover.

Aruna Roy, President of National federation for Indian Women (NFIW), said that the Government of India should review its stand on AFSPA and reconsider the wishes of the people who are demanding repeal of the Act.

"We should render utmost support to Sharmila and civil societies, particularly the women NGOs should join the struggle in an all out effort to fight against AFSPA", she added.

She further said that AFSPA should not be an option to counter insurgency problem in any part of the country but the problem should be tackled by a more suitable Act which does not harm the public and violate their rights.

Asked about the way in which National Rural Employment Generation Scheme (NREGS) is being implemented in the State, Aruna said the people of Manipur are not fully aware of the scheme and needed mass awareness programme on it through putting up of billboards in every corner of the State where their rights are clearly written through which they can understand their rights.

"If the people know their rights and what they should get from NREGS, the authorities could be prevented from wrong doing in implementing the scheme", she further asserted.


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