Shillong: Meghalaya chief minister Conrad K Sangma today said that “AFSPA definitely is not the solution”. Therefore, Sangma said that his government will urge the Centre to repeal the draconian Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), 1958 from the North East region.
“We continue to keep our stand against the AFSPA and we will urge the government of India to repeal this draconian act,” Sangma said.
Stating that AFSPA is not the way to address issues of the region, he said there is a need to understand and look at a larger point and that is really about the issues being faced by the North East whether it is development issues, whether issues related to the youths and insurgencies, issue of identity, the peace, the law and order situation and national security.
“Now the problem here is that we all agree on the issues that are there, but the stand that we take at that particular point we defer it,” he said while citing an example that the law and order is a problem but then some people felt that AFSPA is the way to move forward.
“But we have seen that the stand of putting the AFSPA has not really given any results and in the last many years that the AFSPA has been there it has only been counterproductive and there has been more unrest. And we have had situations where lots of precious lives have been lost and people had to go through a lot of pain and suffering,” he further stated.
Asserting the need to address such issues, the chief minister however said there are many other ways and means to address them and AFSPA definitely is not the solution.
Sangma, also the national president of the National Peoples’ Party (NPP), said that the stand against the AFSPA has been there for a very long time and it is not something that was decided in the last few days.