Imphal: Manipur government has decided to felicitate “Iron Lady” Irom Chanu Sharmila for her 16 years’ of hunger strike as part of the anti-AFSPA movement.

The government’s decision comes following the Centre removal Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) from several parts of Assam, Manipur and Nagaland.

Manipur chief minister N Biren Singh said that the government appreciated the people of Manipur, mainly Shrimati Sharmila who sacrificed half of her life staging dharna and hunger strike for 16 years.

“We shall definitely invite her and honour her. I would like to thank all the people for their support. At least, the AFSPA has been removed for the areas under 15 police stations of the state,’’ Singh said.

Manipur’s well-known human rights activist Irom Chanu Sharmila was on a hunger strike from November 4 in 2000 to August 2016 demanding repeal of the AFSPA before forming the People’s Resurgence and Justice Alliance ahead of the 2017 Manipur assembly elections.

She began her hunger strike two days after security forces killed 10 people at Malom on the outskirts of Imphal which was later known as the Malom Massacre.

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