TODAY -
AFSPA memo, protest at ND
Source: The Sangai Express

New Delhi, December 23: In a relentless pursuit for repeal of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act 1958, another memorandum was submitted to Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh by the Political Parties Forum of Manipur, Apunba Lup, Imphal Bazar Business Forum, masad, Reachout and various Delhi based organisations, civil societies.

A dharna was also staged at the national capital today against the draconian Act which has become a serious threat to civilian lives in the North East region in general and Manipur in particular.

The protest was participated by RJD leaders, Bengali Samaj, Jain community, Imphal Bazar Business community, Apunba Lup and msad.

Drugesh Choudhury, convenor of Imphal Bazar Business Community said Sharmila has been fasting for the last six years on behalf of the Manipuri people and their rights, adding that the body supports her struggle to repeal the Act and they reached New Delhi to show solidarity to Sharmila.

Durgesh also desired that the Manipur Government should take a Cabinet decision at the earliest and to forward it to the pm and Home Minister to save the lives of innocent people.

He further blamed Indian Army and Manipur Police for frequently torturing innocent people while stating that non-Manipuris are always in love with the Manipuri culture and the State itself.

Amrik Singh Pahwa, social worker who came down to Delhi to support Sharmila's crusade against AFSPA also strongly condemned the colonial Act which has become an instrument to suppress the Manipuri people.

Gen secretary of Shiv Seva Sangh Murli Lal Bhardwaj also strongly condemned this Act.

With immense support and solidarity from all across India and the world who believes in democracy, freedom and dignity, the peoples' demand to scrap AFSPA 1958 is much more a serious issue than what the Govt of India seems to have perceived so far.

The memorandum also drew the attention of the Prime Minister to the lone crusade and sacrifice of Irom Sharmila who has been on fast unto death for over six years now without even touching water in her lips for such a long period.

For the State, this is a crime and she has been harassed, detained and nose-fed.

Such indomitable spirit to fight against the Act was heralded long before when Pebam Chitaranjan selfimmolated and nude protest by Manipuri women, all against AFSPA.

The memorandum also mentioned that it was a great disappointment that PM reiterated the "Act would be made more humane" which was already said in 2004 without any progressive development.

So far the subjugated people of this country would wonder in what context the Prime Minister said "people of Manipur are entitled to the same privileges and protection of law as the citizens in the rest of the country" The Collective Group demand repeal of this Act as soon as possible, without retaining any provision of AFSPA in some other laws as recommended by Justice Reddy Committee.

The Group also demanded prosecution of the military personal guilty of violating human right.

It also urged for release Irom Sharmila from the police custody.


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