What triggered it was the Malom Massacre; The Assam Rifles convoy was attacked near Malom, Manipur by insurgents. AR shoots at civilians at a nearby bus-stop. 10 civilian’s dead, including a 65 year old woman and an 18-year old former National Child Bravery Award winner. What followed was a brutal combing operation – more deaths, rape, plunder – the usual.
The AFSPA has been applied since 1958 in Manipur – they are headed to celebrate the platinum jubilee now that they are done with the golden jubilee.
Once this law comes into force, it allows anyone in the Indian army (or paramilitary) to shoot, arrest or search without any warrant, destroy a dwelling, and even shoot to kill – on suspicion alone. Further, the AFSPA snatches away an aggrieved citizen’s right to seek redress in courts, as no military personnel can be prosecuted without the written consent of the government.
Manmohan Singh appointed the Justice B.P. Jeevan Reddy Committee in Nov 2004 which recommended either amending the act or replacing it with a more humane legislation.
Irom Sharmila has been under a ritual of release and arrest every year because under IPC section 309, a person who \”attempt to commit suicide\” is punishable \”with simple imprisonment for a term which may extend to one year [or with fine, or with both]\”. Irom is force fed nasally every day by a process called Nasogastric intubation.