Demand for withdrawing AFSPA in JK

‘Act must go but situation not conducive’, says ruling PDP

Srinagar, Apr 24 : With the voices getting louder for the revocation of Armed Forces Special Power Act (AFSPA) in Jammu and Kashmir, the Ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Tuesday said that though the act must go but maintained that situation was not conducive to withdraw the act.
The AFSPA is in vogue in Jammu and Kashmir since 1990, gives sweeping power and immunity to the armed forces.
“From day one we wanted peace in Kashmir. We too want that AFSPA should end, but let situation improve so that the law could be withdrawn,” Maternal uncle of Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti and PDP Vice President Sartaj Madni said sources over phone.
He said that the PDP is keen that laws like AFSPA are withdrawn. “The revocation of AFSPA is part of Agenda of Alliance and party has always supported its revocation from the state. We have created the party for such things. We want the people of the Jammu and Kashmir have dignified normal life,” Madni added.
Terming dialogue as the core philosophy of his party, Madni said that PDP has been emphasizing on this aspect for long and even will continue to do so.
During 2014 assembly campaign in the state the PDP leaders has promised that if voted to power, the party will ensure that AFSPA is withdrawn from the state. The BJP on the other hand, had opposed any withdrawal of the act.
Mehbooba’s predecessor and Opposition National conference leader, Omar Abdullah had in 2012 expressed confident that “ the day was not for” when AFSPA will be withdrawn from the state during his governments tenure.
However after failing in his attempt, Omar blamed the collation partner congress and opposition PDP for not supporting him in his endeour to get AFSPA revoked.
The act has remained the bone of contention between the regional parties, PDP, NC and National parties BJP and the congress. While the regional parties in favour of revoking the act, the National parties want the AFSPA to remain to provide legal cover to the security forces operating in ant-militancy operations in the state.
The demand for removal of AFSPA comes day after the controversial AFSPA was removed completely from Meghalaya and restricted to eight police stations bordering Assam and three districts neighboring Myanmar.
While Hurriyat Conference (M) chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq Monday asked New Delhi to withdraw controversial Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) from Kashmir saying the “draconian” act has played havoc with “our lives” the number of legal luminaries including Senior lawyer, Zafar Shah, Noted human rights defender and lawyer, Parvez Imroz, said that the Armed forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) is draconian and should be revoked.
The legal experts said that the law was being misused by army. They said that AFSPA “warrants its withdrawal from the state for having been used against people” and provides “immunity to army.” (KNS)

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