Assam tribune and Manipur times
IMPHAL, July 23 – Manipur’s Iron Lady Irom Chanu Sharmila who has been in prison since 2000 for being on an indefinite fast protesting the controversial anti-terror law was remanded to judicial custody for 15 days on charge of attempting suicide, by the Court of Judicial Magistrate First Class (JMIC) in Imphal today.
The human rights defender, speaking to the media on the sideline after her formalities, accused the state government for further continuation of the Armed Forces SpecialPowers Act (AFSPA) in the state. It is up to the state government to withdraw the disturbed area status from the whole state, Sharmila claimed. The Centre has nothing to do when state government imposed the Disturbed Area Act.
Sharmila further said she still expects a lot of public support to her agitation. The government may not hear the voice of the people without a mass movement, she felt.
Sharmila, 40, is campaigning to have the controversial AFSPA repealed. The act provides unlimited powers to security forces to shoot at sight and arrest anybody without a warrant.She launched an indefinite hunger strike in 2000 after she witnessed the killing of 10 people by army soldiers in Malom village on the outskirts, Imphal.
Meanwhile, comments and observation on the human rights violation in the state, besides offering of floral tribute to the portraits of Thokchom Rabina and Chungkham Sanjit marked the 4th death anniversary of Th Rabina and Ch Sanjit at Khurai Nongmai Leima Laibung at Khurai Chinkham Leikai in Manipur’s Imphal East district today under the aegis of Joint Action Committee (JCA) against the brutal killing of the duo Rabina and Ch Sanjit.
It may be recalled that both Sanjit and Rabina were killed in a reported fake encounter on Jun 23,2009 in broad day light at the heart of Imphal town, a few distances away from the state assembly hall where the session of the house was in progress. Later, New Delhi-based Tehelka magazine exposed the fake encounter through a series ofphotographs that closely followed the sequence of the incident.
Amnesty International member Raghu Menon came to meet me. I was recognized as a prisoner of conscience by Amnesty. Binayak Sen also joined the same recognition and raise the voice for not keeping me in the prison. There was a drive for the same cause and the support was for my success in the fight for removal of AFSPA. The movement was appreciative expressed Irom Chanu Sharmila in a short interview when she was produced before the court today. I felt good when outsider came and skip their meal as a part of my hunger strike. People can come and join my cause when I came out for court appearance. This is a democratic land and voice of the people is the voice of God says Sharmila.
The government is observing people’s support. United Nations’ and Supreme Court of India have also recommended for its removal in the form of pressure. The Act has not been effective, new militant organization has given birth she continued.
The act is imposed in the form of disparity why only in NE. It is the lack of political commitment among legislatives of Manipur. It seems the legislators are empowered to suppress me. Civil society voice is not taken seriously says the heartfelt activists Irom Chanu Sharmila.
On the other hand it appeared in the newspaper that some civil society organizations are campaigning for Nobel Peace Prize title. It makes me angry I do not feel good about the matter. Let us not strive for right but go for responsibility appealed Sharmila.
Vision is a sacred to me. I cannot predict the future but ever since the existence of human civilization there has been much governance. I felt like shouting peace in the middle of the war, when I started my cause it was a heartfelt cry I brought up.
If you think that without violence you can’t rule there is a whole lack of humanity in the system.
I always believe in God. Even the insurgents group who fight for truth with an aim and if they thinks that revolution without gun is impossible I never support violence.
Power abuse at various levels should be stopped. Humanity should be kept in mind and a hard blow is not good.
If you started a song there should be an end so I continue my struggle my cause is for humanity says Sharmila.
The State is with a wrong notion without AFSPA we cannot rule. As a democratic leader if they are committed they should go by people’s choice and wish.