Imphal: Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh announced the withdrawal of “disturbed area” status from areas under the jurisdiction of nine police stations with effect from April 1, 2022, for a period of six months. He made the announcement to the media during a press conference held at the Chief Minister’s Secretariat on Friday evening .

The police stations from which “disturbed area” status had been withdrawn under Section-3 of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 are Sekmai, Lamsang, Patsoi, Lamlai, Irilbung, Bishnupur, Thoubal, Kakching and Jiribam. As of now, the disturbed area status had been withdrawn from 15 police stations, including six police stations withdrawn earlier i.e. Imphal, Lamphel, City, Singjamei, Porompat and Heingang.

CM Biren Singh stated that withdrawal of disturbed area had been a long-standing demand of the people of the state. The state government had been informing the Central leadership about the necessity of lifting the AFSPA from the state, he added.

He continued that the state government, under the guidance of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and support of Union Home Minister Amit Shah, has been working tirelessly to improve the law and order situation in the state. With the financial assistance of the central government, the state was able to persuade many underground organisations/insurgent groups to surrender and join the mainstream.

The CM further continued that withdrawal of disturbed area status had shown that the law and order situation had improved considerably in the state. He appealed to the public to support the government’s efforts so that the disturbed area status could be lifted from remaining areas of the state.

Singh expressed his gratitude to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Union Defense Minister Rajnath Singh and other central leaders for lifting the disturbed area status. He also showed his gratitude towards the people of Manipur, civil society organisations, students and especially individuals like Irom Sharmila “who were at the forefront demanding withdrawal of Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act from the state”.

It may be mentioned that along with Manipur, the Centre has reduced disturbed areas under AFSPA in Nagaland and Assam.

Power Minister Thongam Biswajit, Education Minister Yumnam Khemchand, Youth Affairs and Sports Minister Govindas Konthoujam, Cooperation Minister Nemcha Kipgen, Water Resources Minister Awangbow Newmai and Chief Secretary Dr Rajesh Kumar were also present during the press conference among others.

Also read: Will AFSPA be lifted from Assam soon?

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