AFSPA under scanner again

AFSPA under scanner again

Recent civilian killings in forces firing at Sirnoo Pulwama in south Kashmir have once again shifted the focus at Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), which provides impunity to soldiers operating in Jammu and Kashmir.
Many people believe that civilian killings could be stopped if AFSPA is revoked from Jammu and Kashmir. This law has been prevalent in the strife torn state since 1990, when militancy broke out in the Valley.
When Omar Abdullah became the Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir in 2009 he assured the people that AFSPA would be revoked during his tenure. He even tried to get the law repealed but his request was turned down at one or other pretext.
To get AFSPA revoked was one of the election planks of the Peoples Democratic Party but after winning the elections in 2014 and signing the Agenda of Alliance with the BJP, PDP maintained silence over AFSPA.
During the past few months senior Congress leader and former union minister Saifuddin Soz has been vocal vis-à-vis AFSPA. He has been making numerous appeals to the human rights activists and organizations to visit Kashmir and launch a campaign to seek revocation of the AFSPA from the state.
Given the conditions prevailing in the Valley it looks impossible that AFSPA would be revoked from Jammu and Kashmir as the militancy related incidents have increased since 2016. Even the Army Chief General Bipin Rawat has on many occasions said that AFSPA is must for soldiers operating in J&K andpoliticians should stop playing politicsover AFSPA, and they should concentrate on other issues. But the AFSPA is once again in news and it’s likely to remain in news if civilian killings don’t stop in the Valley.