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Have asked Centre to repeal AFSPA from Nagaland, says CM Neiphiu Rio

This comes on a day when Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad Sangma, too, called for the repeal of the Act.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: December 6, 2021 3:34:18 pm
Nagaland Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio said compensation has been announced by both the Central and state governments for the families of the deceased. (File Photo)

A day after 14 civilians were killed by security forces in Nagaland, Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio said on Monday that his government has asked the Centre to remove the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958, from Nagaland.

Addressing reporters after attending the funeral services of the civilians at Oting in Nagaland’s Mon district, Rio said the Centre will be providing an ex gratia assistance of Rs 11 lakh and the state Rs 5 lakh to the kin of the deceased.

“I’ve spoken to the Union Home Minister and he is taking the matter very seriously. We’ve given financial assistance to affected families. I have also urged the Centre to remove AFSPA from Nagaland as the law is a black spot on the image of the country,” the Chief Minister added.

This comes on a day when Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad Sangma, too, called for the repeal of the Act.

AFSPA is effective in Kashmir, Nagaland, Assam, Manipur (excluding seven assembly constituencies of Imphal) and parts of Arunachal Pradesh and was withdrawn from Meghalaya only in 2018. It gives power to the Army and central forces deployed in “disturbed areas” to kill anyone acting in contravention of law, arrest and search any premises without a warrant and provide cover to forces from prosecution and legal suits without the Centre’s sanction.

On Saturday, the security officers, in a case of “mistaken identity”, opened fire at a pick-up van, killing six civilians in Nagaland’s Mon district. In the operation and the clashes that ensued with the security forces later, the civilian death toll went up to 13. On Sunday, authorities said that a large crowd of angry villagers gathered in Mon town and marched to the Assam Rifles camp, engaging in vandalism. The security forces opened fire, leading to the death of one more civilian.

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