AFSPA removed from most areas of North Eastern states

Tags: National National News

Centre has decided to further reduce the jurisdiction of ‘disturbed areas’ under the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 (AFSPA) in Assam, Nagaland and Manipur.

An overview of the news

  • The decision has been taken in view of the significant improvement in the security situation in North-East India.

  • Compared to 2014, there has been a 76 percent reduction in extremist incidents in 2022.

  • During this period, there has been a 90 percent reduction in the deaths of security personnel and 97 percent in the deaths of civilians.

  • Earlier, in a historic move, the Center brought down the disturbed areas in Nagaland, Assam and Manipur from April 2022 under AFSPA.

What is AFSPA?

  • Armed Forces Special Powers Act, (AFSPA),1958, gives armed forces the power to maintain public order in “disturbed areas.

  • It came into force decades ago in the context of insurgency in the northeastern states.

  • It provides "special powers" to the army, air force and central paramilitary forces.

  • The Act provides that if "reasonable suspicion exists", the armed forces may also arrest any person without warrant; May enter or search premises without warrant and prohibit possession of firearms.

What are the Disturbed Areas?

  • A disturbed area means which is declared by notification under Section 3 of the AFSPA.

  • A region may be disturbed because of differences or disputes between members of different, racial, religious, language or regional groups or castes or communities.

  • The Central Government or the Governor of the State or administrator of the Union Territory have power to declare the whole or part of the State or Union Territory as a disturbed area.

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