The Union government on Thursday announced the reduction of areas under the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act in the Northeastern states of Nagaland, Assam, and Manipur.
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 (@AmitShah) March 31, 2022
AFSPA has been in force for decades in these three Northeastern states for the purpose of handling various insurgencies in the region. The law empowers security forces to carry out operations and arrest anyone without any prior warrant. The forces also have immunity from arrest and prosecution if they shoot someone dead.
"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 Modi government," said Amit Shah following the announcement.
This reduction of areas under AFSPA, however, does not mean it is being completely withdrawn, according to a Union home ministry spokesperson cited by PTI. The law continues to be applicable in some areas of these states.
There have been demands for a long time for the repealing of the law as its "draconian" provisions have been criticised and it has been alleged that there have been human rights violations by the forces operating under the law.
With PTI inputs