The Naga Women’s Union (NWU) “vehemently” opposed the extension of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act, 1958 (AFSPA) to the entire state of Manipur, excluding 19 police stations in “Imphal valley”, for a period of six months with effect from October 1, 2023.
The NWU felt that the decision of the Government of India to extend the draconian law after seeing the present situation of the state of Manipur is highly questionable. “Nagas have been trying their best to maintain peace and to restore normalcy in spite of the turmoil and not even a single voice is raised other than continuous pleas for restoring peace”.
However, the extension of AFSPA in the Naga areas at this present juncture is tyrannical, intimidating and menacing, the NWU also said. The domineering and autocratic behavior can never bring any empathy, it added.
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The NWU then argued whether the violence hit the valley under 19 police stations in Imphal is safer than the “calm” Naga areas. The NWU added that the “disparity shown” to the Nagas is unacceptable when peace and normalcy have prevailed for 26 years in Naga areas after the signing of Indo-Naga Ceasefire on July 1, 1997.
The NWU then said, since the promulgation of AFSPA in the state, Nagas had a tearful life and “we long for the day when the Government of India will wipe away our tears of fear and hug us with love”. The women community fears that it has been 66 years of infliction of pain after the entry of AFSPA and the further extension could mean trepidation.
The NWU condemned and demanded the immediate withdrawal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act, 1958, (AFSPA) from the “Naga homeland” and restore hope and confidence in the peace process.
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