The central government has extended the term of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) for six more months in Nagaland with effect from December 30 (Monday).
The Centre has opined that the area comprising the whole of Nagaland was in a “disturbed condition” and that the use of armed forces in the aid of civil power was necessary.
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The notification stated, “Now, therefore, in exercise of the powers conferred by Section 3 of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 (No. 28 of 1958), the Central Government hereby declares that the whole of the said State to be a ''disturbed area'' for a period of six months with effect from 30th December 2019 for the purpose of that Act.”
Earlier, AFSPA was extended in Nagaland for six months from June 30 till December 29. It may be mentioned here that Nagaland has been under the AFSPA for almost 60 years now.
The AFSPA continued even after a framework agreement that was signed on August 3, 2015, between Naga insurgent group National Socialist Council of Nagaland- Isak Muivah (NSCN-IM) general secretary Thuingaleng Muivah and government interlocutor R.N. Ravi in the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
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It may be stated here that the AFSPA gives the military sweeping powers to search and arrest, and to open fire if they find it necessary for "the maintenance of public order", and to do so with a degree of immunity from prosecution.
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