Expect some ‘positive development’ in Assam, Nagaland regarding AFSPA soon: Assam CM

New Delhi: Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said that some positive developments can be expected soon with respect to the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) during this year in the state. The chief minister also said that “some positive developments” with regard to the Act would also take place in neighboring Nagaland, where it was in force, PTI reported.

“With the subsidence of militancy, the Army has almost withdrawn from Assam except in five-six districts and when the state government will take a practical decision to renew AFSPA after four months,” he said.

The Armed Forces Special Powers Act gives wide-ranging powers to the security forces to operate freely in any place that has been declared a “disturbed area”. The Act exempts any military personnel working in an area where AFSPA has been invoked from harassment unless cleared by the Centre.

The Act was enacted in Assam in November 1990 and has been extended for six months since its review by the Central Government.

Himanta also said that the Assam government has decided to rationalize the deployment of personal security officers so that they do not become a situation for individuals and politicians. He also said that except the former Chief Minister of the state, the facilities provided by the government to former Chief Ministers for housing and security cover at par with the incumbent Chief Minister will also be removed.

“We have decided to formulate a new policy for deployment of PSOs in the state. Screening will be done by a security review committee for allotment of PSOs, except in constitutional posts or those requiring security cover,” he said during a press conference after the first cabinet meeting of the year.