More than 16 years after she began her fast-unto-death protest against the controversial Armed Forces Specials Powers Act (Afspa), activist Irom Charu Sharmila, on Tuesday, announced she would end it on August 9. Utv Pakistan Report
Speaking to media outside the Imphal court, the 43-year-old said would instead contest elections.
“I will break my fast as the Govt has failed to give any positive response, will fight elections to resolve the issues,” she told ANI.
Known as the ‘Iron Lady of Manipur’, Irom spent years being force-fed by the government through her nose as she called for the repealing of the act.
She began her non-violent protest in November 2000 after 10 people were killed by troops of the Assam Rifles near a bus stop at Malom, in the outskirt of Imphal.
The Afspa 1958 covers large parts of northeastern India and Kashmir, and gives security forces sweeping powers to search and shoot on sight. Seen by critics as a cover for human rights abuses, Sharmila was one of the strongest voices opposing the act.