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IMPHAL, April 4(IFP): Several human rights activists and civil organisations today organised a candle light protest in support of Irom Chanu Sharmila who has been fasting for the last 16 years demanding repeal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act.
The protest demonstration was held at the Leimayol Art Centre, Chingamakha around 4 pm under the theme “People’s voice supporting Irom Chanu Sharmila to repeal AFSPA 1958”.
It was jointly organised by the North East Dialogue Forum, Conflict Widow Forum, Youth of Manipur, People’s Platform Secretariat, Village Women Coordinating Committee, People for Human Rights and Climate Change, Environment Protection Network, Foundation Development Centre, Social Action Development Organisation, Social Youth Development Organisation, Social Welfare and Development Centre.
During the demonstration, representatives from the different orgnisations also shared their views seeking Sharmila’s release and further appealed to the Government of India to repeal AFSPA, 1958 immediately so as to save the anti AFSPA crusader.
The organizers also questioned that when people of the region respect the movement of Mahatma Gandhi for India, then why the Government of India is neglecting Irom Chanu Sharmila’s movement demanding repeal of AFSPA.
The participants held placards reading “Manipur government should respect the order of Patiala Court, Sharmila is not attempting suicide-she wants to survive, Government of India should respect the non-violent movement of Sharmila, we respect the non-violent movement of Gandhi so the people of India should respect Sharmila’s movement, repeal AFSPA 1958, wake-up people of Manipur-Sharmila is not fighting for herself, she is fight for the people of northeast, let’s save Sharmila, we are with you Sharmila and we want democracy” etc.