Himanta Biswa Sarma's push for AFSPA withdrawal in Assam
The Chief Minister cited a significant improvement in the law-and-order situation to call for the withdrawal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) from the north-eastern state
Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Monday, 4 September met Home Minister Amit Shah and discussed about complete withdrawal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) from the northeastern state.
During his meeting with the Home Minister at his residence which lasted for 30 minutes, the Chief Minister discussed the roadmap for complete withdrawal of AFSPA from Assam, a government official said.
The official said that the Chief Minister cited the significant improvement in the law-and-order situation, surrendering of scores of underground cadres of extremist outfits with huge cache of arms and ammunition following signing of several peace accords, and drastic fall in deaths of security personnel and civilians as reasons for complete lifting of AFSPA from Assam.
The Home Minister put forth some suggestions to pave the way for complete withdrawal of AFSPA, the official said, adding, Sarma assured that state government would take further steps based on his suggestions.
Meanwhile, Sarma while apprising about his meeting with Shah wrote on X (formerly Twitter): "I met Union Home Minister Amit Shah ji at his residence today to discuss the roadmap for the complete withdrawal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act from Assam. The government of Assam will take further steps based on the suggestions of the Home Minister."
Last month, the Chief Minister in his Independence Day address in Guwahati, had said that his government's aim is to completely withdraw AFSPA from the state by the end of 2023.
It may be mentioned that the 'Disturbed Area' notification was in force since 1990 in the whole of Assam.
On 1 April, 2022, the AFSPA was removed from the entire State of Assam except for nine districts, including one sub-division of another district.
From 1 April, the districts under the AFSPA in Assam were further reduced to eight as the Act was withdrawn from the Lakhipur sub-division of Cachar district.
The law gives unbridled power to the Armed Forces and the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) deployed in "Disturbed Areas" to kill anyone acting in contravention of the law, arrest and search any premises without a warrant, and protection from prosecution and legal suits without the Central government's sanction.