The Assam government has extended the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 (AFSPA) in the state for six more months with effect from August 28. The state has been declared as a disturbed area for recent surge in insurgent activities and attacks on armed forces. Moreover, there have been quite a number of cases of illegal arms recovery in different parts of the state.
It needs mention that several civil society groups had demanded the Assam government to withdraw the law from the state. The AFSPA, which empowers security forces to conduct operations, arrest anyone, anywhere without prior notice was enforced in Assam in November 1990 and renewed every six months.
Security forces engaged in counter insurgency operations in Assam favour continuation of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) in the entire state. Though there is complete peace in lower and central Assam, two districts of upper Assam ate still witnessing insurgent activities led by anti-talk Ulfa which is also known as Ulfa (Independent). The Army is part of the unified command structure, a supreme counter insurgency body in Assam.
Army was requisitioned during the anti-Citizenship Amendment Act protest last December. The protest took a violent turn in Guwahati and in upper Assam and five people were killed. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had mentioned about the undesirability of AFSPA, during a rally in Kokrajhar on February 7.
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