Home » ‘I have decided to stop fast-unto-death protest, will contest election’ – Irom Sharmila

‘I have decided to stop fast-unto-death protest, will contest election’ – Irom Sharmila

by IT Web Admin
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Imphal, July 26: Iron Lady Irom Chanu Sharmila, who has been undergoing a fast-unto-death protest for the last 16 years today said that she is fed up with the peoples’ response to her movement and now she had decided to change strategy of her agitation.
“I have decided to change strategy, I will stop fast-unto-death protest and will contest the election as independent candidate with one agenda to repeal AFSPA”, Irom Sharmila said to media after coming out from the court room of Chief Judicial magistrate Imphal West L. Tonsing.
On being asked on when she will stop her fast, the Iron Lady said she will make the announcement on August 9, where another hearing for her case is scheduled.
“I don’t care whether they finish the case or continue but I will change the strategy”, a frustrated Sharmila said.
Shamila expressed dissatisfaction with the politicians who had failed to listen to her demand for repeal of AFSPA, to the Civil Society Organisation who had failed to show solidarity to the protest she has been underway for the past several years, she also expressed anger over the utilization of under age students by the civil society organization to issues like ILP.
“A Manipur Police Commando had confessed on how he had killed Sanjit in broad daylight and the issue is now kept under blanket with no civil society coming up. My protest could have been fulfilled at the time when the police Commando, Herojit made media confession had the people come up with unitedly instead of luring to the temptation made by politicians”, Sharmila added.
The new development had stunned the human rights activists of the state but lifted a burden from Okram Ibobi Singh led Congress government.
“It is a bit of a surprise. We are trying to get in touch with her for more details,” said Babloo Loitongbom, an activist close to her.
In the past, Sharmila always refused to end her fast saying that there is no question of dropping it till the AFSPA is withdrawn.
It was in November 2000 when Sharmila began a hunger strike to protest against the gunning down by the Assam Rifles of 10 civilians waiting at a bus stop at Malom near Imphal airport.
She is demanding the repeal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act, which gives unbridled powers to the armed forces, practically giving them a “right to kill”.
Earlier in July, the Supreme Court asserted that the situation in Manipur has “never been one of war”.
The apex court directed a thorough probe into alleged fake encounter killings there, saying the use of “excessive or retaliatory force” by the armed forces or police was not permissible in ‘disturbed areas’ under the draconian AFSPA.

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Imphal Times is a daily English newspaper published in Imphal and is registered with Registrar of the Newspapers for India with Regd. No MANENG/2013/51092


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