Replacing AFSPA with more humane law under govt consideration

Last Updated: Friday, April 2, 2010 - 22:51

Itanagar: Union Home Minister P Chidambaram on Friday said that recommendations of two panels on replacing the controversial Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, in force in some northeastern states, with a more humane law would soon be placed before the Cabinet.

Talking to reporters after an over two-hour meeting
with army and security officials in this Arunachal Pradesh
capital, Chidamabaram said the recommendations of the Justice
Jeevan Reddy Committee and the Second Administrative Reform
Commission for replacing AFSPA would soon be placed before the
government.

He said provisions of the ceasefire agreement with
NSCN factions in Nagaland did not apply to militancy-affected
districts of Tirap and Changlang in Arunachal and security
forces would act if ultras from Nagaland and Assam were found
to be active there.

Asked about the Centre`s stand not to press for ADB or
World Bank for loans for watershed projects in Arunachal
Pradesh following objections raised by China, which considers
the state as its territory, Chidambaram said "If we need loans
from ADB and WB we will seek them. But, if we don`t need them,
we will not seek them. After all they are loans, not grants.

"I can assure you that projects in Arunachal Pradesh
will not suffer for want of funds."

Asked about the strategy against militants in the
northeast who were using Arunachal Pradesh forests as a
corridor to their bases across the Myanmar border, he shot
back "We can`t discuss strategy and tactics against militants
at a press conference. Whatever needs to be done will be done.
Decisions have been taken, but you can`t expect us to divulge
them."

On steps are being taken to seal the Myanmar border to
thwart attempts by militants to cross over from camps in
Myanmar, Chidambaram retorted "What do you mean by sealing?
Are we waiting with some wax to seal the border?"

Replying to another question on demands for renaming
the Rajiv Gandhi Central University incorporating the name of
the state, which required a constitutional amendment,
Chidambaram said he had received a representation and would
pass it on to the ministry concerned.

On the inter-state boundary dispute between Assam and
Arunachal, he said "a new judge Tarun Chatterjee has taken
over as chairman of the Boundary Commission and we will act
after it submits its report."

PTI



First Published: Friday, April 2, 2010 - 22:51

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