Army's rigidness making it difficult to amend AFSPA: Chidambaram



New Delhi: Finance Minister P. Chidambaram has said the army's rigidness against any dilution or amendment to the controversial Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), is making it difficult for the government to move forward on this proposal.

"Amending the act will make it more humanitarian, but the army's rigidness was not leaving much for the government," Chidambaram said during the K Subramanian Memorial Lecture here yesterday.

"The armed forces, and especially the Chief of Army Staff, the present one and the previous one, have taken a very strong position that AFSPA should not be amended," he added.

"Now, how does the government move forward in the face of such widely divergent views on the sensitive subject"? Chidambaram asked.

"My view on AFSPA is known, the view of the Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir on AFSPA is known. We have the (Justice) Jeevan Reddy Committee report, but yet, if the army takes a very strong stand against any dilution or any amendment to AFSPA, it is difficult for a civil government to move forward," Chidambaram said.

"I think you should ask the question to the armed forces and ask why are they so opposed to even some amendment to AFSPA which will make AFSPA a more humanitarian law," he added.

(ANI)