Under this provision, the AFSPA too will be extended

At a late night meeting on Monday, the Manipur Cabinet decided to recommend extension of the Disturbed Areas Act (DAA) for one more year as the law and order situation stemming from the burgeoning armed movement is alarming. Under this provision, the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) 1958, which gives untrammelled powers to the security forces while dealing with the foreign trained insurgents in Manipur, will also be extended.

The Cabinet discussed in detail reports submitted by the police, the Army and paramilitary forces on the security situation in the State and unanimously decided to make the recommendation to the Union government. However, the AFSPA will not be enforced in seven Assembly segments in the Imphal municipal areas. The government lifted the AFSPA from these segments on August 12, 2004 to mollify the people who were on the war path following the alleged gang rape-cum-killing of Manorama Thangjam on July 11, 2004. Another girl Memita Kongjengbam was shot dead on August 11, 2004 during the protests. Chief Minister Okram Ibobi has been saying that he is under heavy pressure to reimpose the AFSPA on these seven Assembly segments since the there is no positive response from the insurgents. In fact, on August 14, 2004, just two days after lifting the AFSPA, militants hurled hand grenades at the ISKCON centre in Imphal. Six persons were killed and many others wounded.

No separate State

The Cabinet also decided to oppose a demand by Kuki militant organisations for a separate State for these tribals, because the outfits had signed a deal with the Centre on suspension of operations on August 22, 2008 on the condition that they would not disintegrate Manipur’s territory. Besides, Naga organisations, including the NSCN (IM), which is holding talks with the Centre for the past 15 years, have strongly reacted to it.