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Posted by on Jan 19, 2014 in AFSPA |

Critical Analysis of AFSPA

Key Issues

  • Misuse of special powers provided under this act by armed forces is become a highly problematic matter for govt. The Santosh Hedge (retired SC judge) commission to probe encounter made by armed forces in Manipur (2013) found that victims had not any criminal records.
  • Recent nude protest of Nagaland women and hunger strike of Irom Sharmila since 4th Nov 2000 against armed forces for charges of sexual harassment or rape is again raised the matter to repeal the act.
  • The United Nations also suggested India to repeal the act as it is a colonial era law and against standards of human rights.
  • The status quo nature of armed forces to defend act or powers is another problem before world largest democracy as not even single officer or soldier has been prosecuted for charges of rape, murder or destruction of property etc. since 1958 enactment of act.
  • There is no doubt that armed forces presence in disturbed area is remarkable to prevent lot of terrorist attacks but violation of human rights can’t be tolerated on fate of security.

Suggestions

  • Repeal or amend act to confine/restrict powers of armed forces such as arrest without warrant, use force against any person etc. by giving sufficient cause if any civilian injured by such action.
  • Periodical check (in 1 year) on area which is declared as disturbed area by making high level committees and removed armed forces If not necessary. As Punchhi commission suggested that the constitutional power of Governor to declare a disturbed area shall be restricted for duration not more than 3 months.
  • Some Recommendations of Justice Verma Committee (2013) are as follows :-
    • Armed forces must come under purview of ordinary law especially for sexual violence against women.
    • Special commissioners shall be appointed in all conflict areas for security and safety of women from armed personnel.
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