No need for ‘black and draconian’ AFSPA in J-K: Soz

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Srinagar: Congress leader and former Union Minister, Prof. Saifuddin Soz Wednesday said that many innocent people have suffered immense miseries through Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) in Jammu and Kashmir.

Soz said that he felt extremely sad to know that Lt. Governor Manoj Sinha feels content with the continuance of this draconian Act.

“Today, I rose to the horror of AFSPA in J-K State, being in operation for more than 31 years since it was imposed in September, 1990. I had the privilege of challenging this law in the Lok Sabha on August 21, 1990 before its application to J-K State by calling it a Black and Draconian law potential enough to tarnish the image of Indian Democracy”

“As per section 4 of this law, AFSPA, it gives soldiers sweeping powers to arrest without warrants and even shoot to kill in certain situations. I felt considerably surprised today when I came to know that the Lt. Governor Manoj Sinha felt that there was no need to review this black and draconian law in J&K Union Territory.”

“I would invite the attention of the J-K Union Territory Administration to what Justice SR Pandian (See Justice Pandian Commission Report – 2000) had said on AFSPA on 31st October, 2000. Justice SR Pandian had further said that in its (AFSPA’s) operation in J-K State, many innocent people got killed and many others got injured in Chattisinghpora, Brakapora and Pathribal massacres,” Soz said.

He said that Justice Pandian had further said in its report that, “it was nothing short of an unwarranted, brutal attack amounting to the murder without any justification and authority.”

“I continue to think that this law is surely not needed when other laws like PSA are already available to maintain law and order on ground.”

“I lament the fact that the people of Jammu and Kashmir have suffered a great deal. No notice of their sufferings through this black and draconian law has ever been taken,” Soz said. (KNT)

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