The Central Government has once again extended the ‘disturbed area’ act for the entire state of Nagaland with effect from December 30 last year.
The extension under the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) has been given for six months. The act seen as a draconian one by the locals empowers security forces to conduct operations anywhere without any prior notice.
In a gazette notification, the Home Ministry stated it is of the opinion that the area comprising the whole of Nagaland is in such a ‘disturbed and dangerous condition’ that the use of armed forces in aid of the civil power is necessary.
“Now, therefore, in exercise of the powers conferred by Section 3 of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958, the Central Government hereby declares that whole of the said State to be a ‘disturbed area’ for a period of six months with effect from December 30, 2017 for the purpose of that Act,” said the statement.
The previous extension of six months was done on June 30 last year that expired on December 30 last.
Official sources claim ‘killings, loot and extortion’ have been going in various parts of Nagaland leading to the extension of the ‘disturbed area’ in the northeastern state for six more months beginning December 30 under the AFSPA.
The AFSPA has been in force in Nagaland for several decades. It has not been withdrawn even after a framework agreement was signed on August 3, 2015 by Naga insurgent group NSCN-IM general secretary Thuingaleng Muivah and the government’s interlocutor R N Ravi in presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The framework agreement came after over 80 rounds of negotiations spanning 18 years with the first breakthrough in 1997 when the ceasefire agreement was sealed after decades of insurgency in Nagaland.