Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah has strongly come out in support of lifting the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA). Omar, who was speaking in the state Assembly, also praised northeast activist Irom Sharmila's fight for the repeal of AFSPA.
He also made a strong case for its repeal in those areas of Kashmir where violence has waned. "One woman has been on a hunger strike for 12 years just to campaign against the AFSPA law. In comparison to that, I have done nothing. All I say is remove the law where it is unnecessary," Abdullah said.
A Delhi court on Monday framed charges against anti-AFSPA activist Irom 'Chanu' Sharmila 'for attempting to commit suicide' under Section 309 of IPC on March 4, 2013. Sharmila has refused to plead guilty to the charges.
The Armed Forces Special Powers Act or AFSPA is a controversial Act of the Indian Parliament enacted in 1958 that allows security forces including military and paramilitary personnel sweeping powers and protects them from legal prosecution. It was first used in states of Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Tripura and was later extended to Jammu and Kashmir.