I got to know about Sharmila Irom and her fight with the system only couple of days ago and I am still not able to come out of the shock. I got to know about her through Lokayat Group that I am part of, and I am cursing myself how can I be so ignorant about such a serious issue in my own country. But I am sure, unfortunately I am not in minority.
Sharmila is a poet and a journalist. She is on Hunger Strike since November 2, 2000 – yes, that’s right! She has been doing it for the last 9 years and this is her 10th year of hunger strike. Her fight is against the atrocious act – Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFPSA ). This act allows not just officers but even Junior Commissioned Officers and Non-Commissioned Officers of the army to search, arrest, and even kill any person on grounds of mere “suspicion”.Yes, they can kill anyone with impunity, without fear of persecution! And I am still unable to come out of shock after knowing this existence of this act in 7 north-east India for last 5 decades, yes – that is more than 50 years. And we talk about freedom and all ourselves world’s largest democracy???? And these are the facts that the media seldom discus – talk about all those omnipresent news channels and their “breaking news” coverage!!!
The least we can do is to spread awareness about her fight and support her in whichever we we can. That’s the purpose of this tiny post!
You can read more about here here –
- Wikipedia – Some details about here.
- Manipur Freedom – This is where you can really get exhaustive details about this courageous lady. You can also find out how you can support her.
- Sudeep’s Diary – An old post from Sudeep. Worth reading!
Justice Jeevan Reddy judicial commission appointed by the Indian government recommended repealing this atrocious act, AFPSA. But government is not acting on it. I believe Sharmila’s fight will be fruitful when this law is completely withdrawn. And that can only be done through public pressure, when we pressurize our government to do it – it’s still a democracy, right? Let’s hope it happens soon.
Here is my bit – Repeal AFSPA!