Armed forces (Special Powers Act)
It is stringent law that allows the armed forces to use maximum powers in certain regions which are declared as “Disturbed”.
When a state or part of it is at continued unrest such as cases of militancy and insurgency and especially its borders are threatened. By Act 7 of 1972, the power to declare an area as disturbed was extended to the central government.
In Such areas, the Officer of Armed forces has powers to:
The officer can use Firing or any other means against a person, even it may cause death when that person is acting against the law. This is done to restore the public order in that disturbed area after giving an early warning.
Also, An Officer can arrest anyone without any warrant, who has committed cognizable offences or is reasonably suspected. The officer may use force if needed for the arrest.
Also, An Officer can enter and search any premises to make such an arrest, recover any arms and ammunition.
Also, An officer can stop and search any vehicle, that is reasonably suspected to carry weapons or such persons.
States under Armed Forces Special Powers Act
Most parts of North Eastern States. The whole of Assam and Nagaland. Whole Manipur with an exception of Imphal Municipal area.
In Arunachal Pradesh, disturbed areas are districts of Tirap, Changlang, Longding, and areas of Namsai and Mahadevpur police station bordering Assam.
Jammu and Kashmir have a separate J&K Armed forces (Special Powers) Act 1990.
Demand of Repeal of AFSPA
Several sections of civil society and Human rights organizations argue that this Act encourages impunity. Also, this causes excess atrocities by armed forces under its protective cover, argued by Human rights activists.
Irom Chanu Sharmila, an activist sat on an indefinite fast in 2000 and ended her fast in August 2016.
By this Government appointed a committee headed by retired Supreme Court Judge, B.P. Jeevan Reddy. The committee recommended the repeal of AFSPA. Also suggested it could be replaced with the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.