Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma has said that the Armed Forces (Special Power) Act, 1958 should be repealed as he joined the growing chorus for withdrawal of the law amid the civilian killings in Nagaland. Sangma tweeted his condolences on the firing incident
Deeply saddened by the unfortunate loss of lives at the firing incident in Nagaland’s Oting. My deepest condolences to the bereaved families. I pray for speedy recovery of those injured and peace to be restored ??@Neiphiu_Rio
— Conrad Sangma (@SangmaConrad) December 5, 2021
Civil society groups, rights activists and political leaders of the Northeast region have been demanding the withdrawal of the “draconian” law for years, alleging excesses by security forces with impunity under the cover of the Act.
AFSPA confers special powers on the armed forces in areas deemed as disturbed.
“AFSPA should be repealed,” tweeted Sangma, whose NPP is an ally of the BJP. The state Congress also supported the chief minister, urging him to convene a meeting for consultation over the issue.
AFSPA should be repealed
— Conrad Sangma (@SangmaConrad) December 6, 2021
“We must go all out to demand immediate repeal of this draconian oppression on our people. Kindly convene a consultation at the earliest,” Congress MLA Ampareen Lyngdoh tweeted in reply to Sangma.
The AFSPA is in force in Assam, Nagaland, Manipur (excluding Imphal Municipal Council area), Arunachal Pradesh’s Changlang, Longding, Tirap districts and areas falling within the of eight police stations at the Assam border. The Hynniewtrep Youth Council (HYC) also demanded that the AFSPA be withdrawn for building a peaceful Northeast.