The Armed Force (Special powers) Act is likely to be withdrawn from Assam in August, 29 years after its imposition in the state.
The government at the Centre has already asked the Army to plan its return from the state, the Economic Times reported.
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AFSPA, which grants special powers to the armed forces while conducting counter-insurgency operations, was imposed in Assam on November 27,1990 when United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) militancy was at its peak.
Over the years, the Army has gradually withdrawn from several districts as the situation improved. Police and paramilitary forces have taken the Army’s place.
In September 2018, the Centre had delegated to Assam the power to extend or withdraw AFSPA. The state government has twice extended the Act, citing the upcoming publication of the final National Register of Citizens (NRC).
“The NRC process will be through by July 30 (as directed by Supreme Court). We have been informally asked to plan where the operational units will head to after moving out of the state,” the Economic Times quoted security source as saying.
It should be mentioned that according to the Ministry of Home Affairs, the year 2018 witnessed the lowest number of insurgency incidents and civilian deaths in the region since 1997.