Guwahati, Assam (September 11, 2014/Pubic Statement): We the civil society groups from the all the seven sister States of North East India, having assembled in Gawahati on this day the 11th of September 2014 under the auspices of Centre for Research and Advocacy, Human Rights Alert, Manab Adhikar Sangram Samiti, WinG-India, North East Dialogue Forum, Borok People Human Rights Organisation, Barak Human Rights Protection Committee, People’s Right to Information and Development Implementing Society of Mizoram and deliberated upon by eminent personalities of the region like Prof. Apurba Kr. Baruah, Advocate Bijon Mahajan, writer and social activist Kaka Iralu, Dr. Prasenjit Biswas,Professor of Philosophy, NEHU, Babloo Loitongbam, Executive Director, Human Rights Alert, Anjuman Ara Begum, member, WinG-India and Prof. Akhil Ranjan Dutta among others on the various aspects of the imposition and continuance of Armed Forces Special Powers Act, 1958;
Noting that it was on the 11 September 1958 that the President of India signed the Act, and the same day 9/11 is observed as the anti-terrorism day, the struggle against state terrorism started on the same day for the inalienable civil, political and cultural rights of the peoples of Northeast India with the imposition of AFSPA 56 years ago;
Outraged by the horrendous stories of atrocities committed by the armed forces of the Union, including aerial bombing, forced grouping and re grouping of villages, burning down of villages, enforced disappearances, extrajudicial executions, rape and other forms of sexual violence, torture and inhumane degrading treatment etc., under the impunity provided by the AFSPA.
Also outraged by the fact that rape and other forms of sexual violence has been used as an weapon of masculinise militarization under impunity provided by AFSPA.
Concerned that the AFSPA is increasingly used to gag and subvert the democratic voices against the unsustainable, predatory and anti-people mega dams and other development projects;
Deeply felt the need to liberate the upcoming generations from the inter-generational trauma inflicted by a militarized state of exception;
Encouraged by the fact that the various official Commissions and Committees set up by the Government of India has also unanimously recommend the repeal of AFSPA.
Having established that AFSPA violates the not only the international human rights standards but even the international humanitarian law India should uphold its international obligations to emerge as a major power on the world stage
1. To take up intensive mobilization of the masses of NE to oppose this draconian law and the struggle against the draconian AFSPA by linking up with other peoples’ movements in the region.
2. To constitute a NE platform for a broader coordination and coalition of various human rights groups, civil society groups, peoples’ movements at both regional as well as at all-India level by going beyond ethnic, tribal and community affiliations;
3. Lobby with the MPs from NE region as well as other sympathetic parliamentarians to facilitate procedural and substantive actions to repeal AFSPA at the earliest.