Zee Media Bureau/Deepak Nagpal
Imphal: Manipuri activist Irom Chanu Sharmila, who was this week released from a `jail hospital` after 14 years in custody, was re-arrested on Friday and forcibly taken away from the protest site after she continued with her hunger strike against the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA).
Irom Sharmila has been re-arrested on charges of attempt to commit suicide, Manipur ADG Santosh Macherla was quoted as saying by PTI.
However, Manipur Deputy Chief Minister Gaikhangam reportedly denied that Irom has been re-arrested.
He was quoted as saying by an English news channel that the government was only trying to take care of her life and protect her, as it was left with no other choice but to forcibly take her away from the protest site for a medical check-up in the wake of her continuing hunger strike.
Today`s development followed high drama at her protest site in Imphal last night, when she refused a medical examination even as hundreds of policemen were deployed.
The 42-year-old activist was set free by a Manipur court on Wednesday which decriminalised her protest against AFSPA. The court dismissed the attempted suicide charge levelled against her, over which she was in custody for the last more than 14 years.
Ever since she was taken into custody, Irom was on a hunger strike and was force fed through a tube.
However, after being released this week Irom had asserted that she would not allow herself to be force-fed again.
"I will not take any force feed this time. I will not allow any medical set up. I don`t feel hungry. What I feel is an emptiness," the activist was reported as saying.
Upon her release, the Manipuri activist had appealed for mass support against AFSPA, which she calls a draconian law.
"I think certain parts of Section 309 have been decriminalised which is an achievement. I feel satisfied. I hope my perseverance against AFSPA will not go unnoticed. Whether people will support me or not I will wait for the government to take AFSPA back. Sooner or later, I will succeed. I have full faith in god," Irom had told media.