RPF reminds people of AFSPA scars, notes SC’s role

IMPHAL, 5th Aug: The proscribed Revolutionary People’s Front (RPF) has said that Indian army had mercilessly killed at least 8983 people and another 1528 people in fake encounter or extra judicial killings ever since the imposition of Armed Forces Special Powers Act, 1958 (AFSPA) in Manipur.

According to an RPF statement issued by its secetary publicity Roben Khuman, colonial law - Armed Forces Ordinance Act was enacted by the British in 1942 to prolong its grip in India. Ironically, India converted carbon copy of the Ordinance into AFSPA in 1958 and imposed the draconian law from September 8, 1980 in Manipur giving Indian forces the licence to kill, arrest and torture innocent civilians at will apart from violating human rights. Since the imposition of the Act in Manipur, Indian forces had killed at least 8983 people excluding those 1528 people killed in fake encounter or extra judicially executed.

Many among those killed were arrested from their homes or from public places but their bodies were either left abandoned at secluded area or made to disappear. However, Indian army denied arrest or involvement in any such illegal acts to conceal the crime, the RPF statement said, adding that at least 16 people arrested by Indian security forces have involuntarily disappeared so far.

Following a PIL filed by Human Rights Alert and Extra Judicial Execution Victims Families Association Manipur, the Supreme Court of India ordered proper investigation into some of the cases related with judicial killings in Manipur. The same court had not only acknowledged some of the fake encounter killings but also ordered investigation into some more cases.

Asking as to who will be penalised for the crime of executing the extra judicial killings, the proscribed outfit reminded the people that from 1990s onwards the government of India through its namesake Manipur government handed the responsibility of executing extra judicial killings to state forces particularly Manipur police commandos instead of Indian forces.

Since then, the merciless killing of innocent people and human rights violation by Manipur police commandos were much higher than the same crime committed by Indian forces during the period 1980-1990, the outfit said, adding that the government of India handed over responsibility of tackling revolutionary movement to the state forces as its own armed forces found it hard to counter revolutionaries and wanted to distort the unity of Manipuri society apart from creating fratricidal killings.

Unaware of India’s mischivious ploy, police commandos who only thought of promotion and took part in extra judicial killings are now on the verge of spending their lives in prison, the outfit maintained. While reminding the people that there had been numerous cases of involuntary disappearance of people arrested by Indian security forces in Manipur but still Indian army denies involvement in any such crime, the RPF said people still question the recovery of skeletal remains including skulls of eight men on December 26, 2014 from the complex of Tombisana high school which was once used as a fort by Indian forces.

As it is impossible for a particular group of local people or individual to kill such a large people at once and collectively dump the bodies at the erstwhile Tombisana school complex, the skeletal remains and skulls belong to those disappeared involuntarily after being arrested by Indian forces, the outfit said.

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