Nagaland MP raises AFSPA issue in Parliament in light of recent killings

In the absence of the government and Opposition resolving their differences over the suspension of 12 MPs in the Rajya Sabha, the protesting Opposition members allowed on Wednesday Naga People’s Front’s KG Kenye to raise the issue of recent killing of civilians in a botched Army operation.

Kenye, speaking about the issues of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), said that when it was brought on the floor of this August House, “it was followed by a marathon debate… which stretched on for days together”.

The members, he said, hailed from different parts of the country “and they expressed their serious apprehensions about the misuse and abuse of this special power, if it was to be used by the Armed Forces against innocent civilians with impunity and, they will go scot free without any prosecution from any court of law, without the previous sanction of the central government.”

It was this “grave danger in visioning the grave consequences that would bear on this country, they had vehemently and stiffly opposed the enactment” of AFSPA.

“In the light of what has transpired in the last 63 years up to December 4 this year, it turned out” that they were “prophetic and they have been proven to be correct”.

AFSPA, he said, has brought “nothing for this country, except animosity on all the people” of the northeast region. “It has taken a heavy toll on the unity and integrity of this country… Ultimately, the casualty is inflicted on the unity and integrity of this country”, he said.

All the efforts, which have been put in by wise men, by leaders, by right-thinking citizens from all walks of life, he said, “have been destroyed in a matter of a few hours”.

“As long as AFSPA continue to remain in the Constitution, these will be used with impunity again,” he added.

Before he could conclude his statement, Kenye was cut short by Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu.

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