TODAY -
Irom Sharmila gets another award
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, February 24, 2010: Acknowledging the unsurpassed nonviolent spirit and the unprecedented crusade of Irom Chanu Sharmila, the Mayilamma Foundation based in Kerala has honoured the Iron Lady with Mayilamma Award 2009. Together with conferring the award to Sharmila, human rights activists coming from different corners of India have launched hunger strike at PDA Complex, Porompat since this afternoon after visiting Sharmila.

The hunger strike staged in solidarity to Sharmila's 10 year old campaign against the draconian Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act 1958 would continue till February 26. A team of human rights activists led by Mayilamma Foundation secretary MN Giri and Yogendra S Parikh, great grandson-in-law of Mahatma Gandhi visited Irom Sharmila in the security ward of JN Hospital at about 1 pm today.

They presented the 1st Mayilamma Award 2009 to Irom Sharmila inside the hospital room.

The award carries a memento, citation and a shawl.

They said that the award was conferred to Sharmila in recognition and support to her 10 year old democratic campaign against the inhuman Act.

Representatives of the Mayilamma Foundation said they would campaign at their maximum level to abolish AFSPA.

They said that they would take up the matter with Defence Minister AK Antony, who is from Kerala.

To this, Sharmila expressed her disgust with politicians.

She said that politicians were not trustworthy.

She, nevertheless, thanked the Mayilamma Foundation for their acknowledgement and support to her campaign.

In spite of the total callousness of the State to her prolonged campaign, the Iron Lady's spirit is still indomitable.

Taking heart from the support coming from different parts of the world, she said that her goal would be achieved someday.

Meanwhile, National Alliance of People's Movement (NAPM), Asha Parivar and many other NGOs based in different parts of India have extended support to the Gandhi to Sharmila campaign launched since January 30 by the Just Peace Foundation.

Members of these human right groups also visited Sharmila and prayed for the success of her campaign.

After visiting Sharmila, Faisal Khan of Asha Parivar and NAPM, Arvind Murty of NAPM (Uttar Pradesh), MH Gandhi of Asha Parivar (Gujarat) and Sajjad Hussain of NAPM (Jammu and Kashmir) went to PDA complex, Porompat and joined the relay hunger strike being staged there under the aegis of Sharmila Kanba Lup.

They would continue their hunger strike till February 26. Though Sharmila spoke in a feeble voice, her spirit is still undaunted.

Thanking all those who came different parts of the world and conveyed their solidarity to her struggle, Sharmila said that her campaign would certainly end successfully.

Commenting on the call of some senior citizens for peace talk, Sharmila said that it is unlikely insurgents fighting for sovereignty of Manipur would welcome the initiative in view of the prevailing situation.

She decried the trend of killing non-local daily wage earners witnessed in Manipur sometime back.

She further appeal to all to stop killing among mortals.

Sharmila also expressed deep concern over the recent incidents of rape and murder of women and children.


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