Supreme Court to hear petition challenging dilution of AFSPA

New Delhi, Aug 14 (Agencies) | Publish Date: 8/14/2018 12:52:42 PM IST

The Supreme Court on Tuesday, 14 August, agreed to hear a petition, filed by a group of over 350 armymen, challenging the dilution of AFSPA. The petitioner claimed that the prosecution of army personnel and security forces for encounters against insurgents will endanger the “national security”, The Times of India reported.

A bench led by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra agreed for an urgent hearing of the case on 20 August. 

The AFSPA, over the years, has courted controversy, for the near immunity that it grants to the security forces against prosecution for “excesses” committed during an operation.

The forces have the power to prohibit a gathering of five or more people in an area, to use force, and to even open fire, after issuing a warning, if they find a person in violation of the law. Not just that, the forces can also arrest a person; enter or search any premises without any warrant.

Advocate Aishwarya, representing the army personnel in the case, told The Times of India that “AFSPA immunity was vital for soldiers to undertake operations against insurgents, armed with sophisticated weaponry.”

In July this year, the Supreme Court had questioned the CBI over the slow pace of the investigation into the alleged extra-judicial killings at the hands of security forces in Manipur, reported The Indian Express.

The apex court, had in 2016, directed the government to investigate every case of extra-judicial killing, including in the areas where AFSPA was in force, according to Livemint. A year later, the court rejected a curative petition, filed by the government, to review its 2016 verdict.



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