Tag Archives: Armed Forces Special Powers Act

एक विद्रोहिणी का अकेलापन

इरोम हम जैसा होना चाहती है ?
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(Photo Courtesy : Times of India)
कुछ कुछ तस्वीरें ताउम्र आप के मनमस्तिष्क पर अंकित हो जाती हैं।
चंद रोज पहले टीवी के पर्दे पर नज़र आयी और बाद में प्रिन्ट मीडिया में भी छायी उस तस्वीर के बारे में यह बात दावे के साथ कही जा सकती है। इस फोटोग्राफ में इरोम शर्मिला – जो आज़ाद भारत के सबसे खतरनाक दमनकारी कानून सशस्त्र बल विशेष अधिकार अधिनियम (Armed Forces Special Powers Act) के खिलाफ संघर्ष की एक प्रतीक बनी रही हैं – अपना सोलह साल से चल रहा अनशन तोड़ती दिख रही हैं। उन्हें एक चम्मच में शहद आफर किया जाता है और वह बेहद भावुक हो जाती हैं, महज एक बंूद लेकर उसे लौटा देती हैं।
ईमानदारी की बात है कि इस तस्वीर को कई कोणों से पढ़ा जा सकता है – एक कोण हो सकता है कि एक किस्म का हताशाबोध कि दुनिया के पैमाने पर ऐतिहासिक कही जा रही इतनी लम्बी भूख हड़ताल के बावजूद इस खतरनाक कानून को टस से मस नहीं किया जा सका, एक अन्य कोण हो सकता है इस एहसास का कि यह सरकार इस कदर संवेदनाशून्य हो चुकी है कि उससे लड़ने के लिए एक नयी किस्म की रणनीति की जरूरत है – बेकार में जान देने के बजाय, अपनी उर्जा को नए सिरेसे एक नए किस्म के संघर्ष मंे लगाने का – तीसरा कोण यह भी हो सकता है कि  महामानव या महामानवी घोषित किए गए किसी व्यक्ति का उस आरोपित प्रतिमा से तौबा करते हुए यह बताने का कि वह भी एक साधारण मानवी है, जिसके अन्दर बाकी लोगों जैसा जीवन जीने की हसरत है।

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Condemn Attack on AAP Headquarters, Defend Freedom of Expression, Oppose Politics of Hurt Sentiments : New Socialist Initiative

New Socialist Initiative Condemns Attack on AAP Headquarters

New Socialist Initiative condemns the attack on the headquarters of AAP (Aam Aadmi Party) office at Kaushambi, Ghaziabad by vigilantes of the Hindutva Brigade and demands stern action against the culprits. Given the inordinate delay by the police in reaching the place and nabbing the hooligans in the case of an emergent political party and high-profile politicians, one can only imagine the safety and security of common citizen under such dispensation.

It is distressing that each time any individual or group has expressed views on the violation of human rights by Armed Forces protected by the draconian Armed Forces Special Powers Act, frenzied jingoism by the rightwing forces as well as by the print and electronic media turn to the rhetoric of hurt sentiments. It is equally distressing that the Aam Aadmi Party too succumbed to such jingoism, found it necessary to distance itself from Prashant Bhushan and turned the question of human rights violation by the armed forces into a question of national integrity. Continue reading Condemn Attack on AAP Headquarters, Defend Freedom of Expression, Oppose Politics of Hurt Sentiments : New Socialist Initiative

Supreme Court judgment on Pathribal case a lost opportunity: Warisha Farasat


The recent Supreme Court judgment on the Pathribal case is a lost opportunity. In the Pathribal encounter killing, five innocent civilians were picked up and killed in a staged encounter by the 7th Rashtriya Rifle of the army. At the time, the then Union Home Minister L.K. Advani had gone on record to say that five Lashkar militants who were responsible for the Chittisinghpora massacre of the Sikhs in the Kashmir Valley had been killed in an encounter. After investigation by the CBI, a chargesheet was filed before the Chief judicial Magistrate, Srinagar, implicating army personnel of the 7th Rashtriya Rifle. In 2006, the army was given the option by the CJM to choose the forum of trial, and to either face court martial or be tried by a regular criminal court. Showing contempt for the CJM, the army personnel refused to face any trial, and asked the CJM to return the chargesheet back to the CBI.

Continue reading Supreme Court judgment on Pathribal case a lost opportunity: Warisha Farasat

Repeal AFSPA: Committee for the Release of Dr Binayak Sen Mumbai

Irom Sharmila has been on a fast unto death for the repeal of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) after troops of the Assam Rifles gunned down 10 civilians at Malom near Imphal airport on November 2, 2000. She is periodically arrested and force-fed by the Indian state.

Dear Prime Minister, Home Minister and Sonia Gandhi,

We have noticed a striking anomaly in the way the armed forces and the state treats the people of Kashmir and the Northeast. When contemplating the use of the armed forces in the forest belt, the armed forces and the state concluded (quite correctly, in our opinion) that they should not be used against the people of this region, including the Maoists, since ‘they are our people’. Yet the very same armed forces have no compunction about being deployed against the people of Kashmir and the Northeast, and the state agrees! Worse still, the armed forces insist that they cannot carry out their duties without AFSPA, which allows them to rape, torture and kill with impunity.

So what is happening here? Are the people of Kashmir and the Northeast not ‘our people’? This is indeed the message that comes across. And if these people feel that they are not regarded or treated as ‘our people’ by the state and armed forces of India, is it surprising that many of them do not want to belong to India?

In fact, AFSPA allows the armed forces to commit atrocities that would be considered war crimes even if they were directed at a foreign enemy. There is no justification for keeping it on the statute books, because it is incompatible with international humanitarian law. Its enforcement in these states has been one of the main reasons why there has been no resolution of the conflicts in them for decades. Consulting the armed forces about the repeal of a law that allows them unlimited power is worse than useless: why would they ever agree? Surely you ought instead to be consulting people like Irom Sharmila, who has been waging a heroic and totally non-violent struggle against AFSPA for ten years!

Shouldn’t the government be asking her why she is ready to sacrifice her life to get this law repealed? And taking her answer deadly seriously before she dies?