The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has decided to extend the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) in certain regions of Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh for an additional six months, commencing from October 1. This move comes after a previous extension granted in March.
The AFSPA extension applies to specific districts and police station areas, with distinct regions identified in both Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh.
In Nagaland, the AFSPA has been extended across eight entire districts and areas encompassing 21 police stations in five additional districts. The eight districts where AFSPA remains in force are: Dimapur, Niuland, Chumoukedima, Mon, Kiphire, Noklak, Phek, and Peren.
Nagaland Police Stations Under AFSPA:
- Khuzama, Kohima North, Kohima South, Zubza, and Kezocha police stations in Kohima district.
- Mangkolemba, Mokokchung-I, Longtho, Tuli, Longchem, and Anaki ‘C’ police stations in Mokokchung district.
- Yanglok police station in Longleng district.
- Bhandari, Champang, and Ralan police stations in Wokha district.
- Ghatashi, Pughoboto, Satakha, Suruhuto, Zunheboto, and Aghunato police stations in Zunheboto district.
Arunachal Pradesh Extension:
In Arunachal Pradesh, the AFSPA extension applies to the districts of Tirap, Changlang, and Longding, along with areas falling under the jurisdiction of Namsai, Mahadevpur, and Chowkham police stations in Namsai district, near the Assam border.
This decision is a continuation of the MHA’s earlier order issued in March, demonstrating an ongoing need for heightened security measures in these regions.
What is AFSPA?
The Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 (AFSPA) grants extensive powers to security forces deployed in “disturbed areas.” These powers include the authority to use lethal force against those violating the law, make arrests and conduct searches without a warrant, and enjoy protection from prosecution and legal actions without requiring the sanction of the Central government. AFSPA is aimed at maintaining law and order in areas facing significant security challenges.