New Delhi, Apr 23: The Union Home Ministry on Monday completely revoked the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) from Meghalaya and diluted in parts of Arunachal Pradesh, a media report said.
Till September 2017, 40 per cent of Meghalaya was under AFSPA. However, after recent review in consultations with the state government, AFSPA was removed completely from Meghalaya, a MHA statement said, according to The Indian Express.
It said the act has been diluted in the jurisdiction of eight police stations from Arunachal Pradesh. “AFSPA is now applicable only in 8 police stations in Arunachal, down from 16 police stations in 2017,” it said.
According to the report, the Home Ministry has also enhanced the surrender-cum-rehabilitation policy for militants in northeast from Rs 1 lakh to Rs 4 lakh. “The policy will be applicable from April 1, 2018,” it said.
The government also relaxed the restricted area permit and protected area permit for foreigners visiting Manipur, Mizoram and Nagaland. Restrictions, however, will remain for “countries of concern”, which includes Pakistan, Afghanistan and China.
During the past four years, there has been a decline of 63 per cent in insurgency-related incidents in the region, while there has been a reduction of 83 per cent in civilians deaths and 40 per cent in casualties of security forces in 2017, said a statement from the Home Ministry.
Reacting to the decision, Hurriyat Conference (M) Chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq on Monday asked the government that if the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) can be revoked from the North Eastern territories why not it can be revoked from the Jammu Kashmir.
Taking to social networking site Mirwaiz wrote “For the past 30years draconian &oppressive #AFSPA has played havoc with our lives time &again we have demanded its withdrawal.If GOI can remove it from its north-eastern territories, this cruel &merciless power bestowed upon 8 lakh Indian Forces in J&K should be revoked immediately! (sic).”