Have you heard of the 12 year old Boy who was brutally Murdered by the Assam Rifles

Have you heard of the 12-year-old boy who was brutally murdered by the 21 Assam Rifles police and Manipur police in Imphal West, Manipur, after being declared a dangerous terrorist? On March 4 2009, 7th-grade school student, Mohammed Azad Khan who was reading the newspaper in his house along with his friend on the veranda was dragged away to a nearby field in front of his parents and neighbors by 21 membered security group led by Major Vijay Singh Balhara.

Though his parents, friend and relatives were locked inside a room by the security forces, they and neighbors witnessed the soldiers torturing the child and pumping bullets into his body. The army planted a pistol nearby the body of the child to fabricate evidence that Azad was killed in a shootout.

Shamelessly the Major told that the 12-year-old Azad is a member of the Peoples United Liberation Front (PULF). In 2013, Supreme Court appointed a commission led by Justice Santosh Hegde and it concluded that Azad was not a terrorist and he was deliberately killed in a fake encounter by the army. In 2018, CBI filed FIR in the case and named Vijay who was already promoted to the rank of colonel.

In support of the murder, 356 serving army officers petitioned the apex court demanding to end inquiries into allegations of killings, torture, kidnappings and rapes by the Army. Since 1979, 1,528 cases of alleged fake encounters in Manipur were reported by Extrajudicial Execution Victim Families Association Manipur (EEVFAM).

The state institutional atrocities are committed by the Indian security establishment under the impunity of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) 1958. AFSPA was enacted in India after being bought through the 1942 British ordinance which was intended to fight the Indian freedom struggle. AFSPA gives unconditional power to the security establishment to tackle resistance and the act was spread to all North Eastern states and Kashmir.

Under AFSPA, “An officer of the armed forces can fire upon or use force upon any person acting in contravention of any law or order for the time being in force in the disturbed area, after giving such due warning as he may consider necessary”. Security forces can even arrest anybody even without a warrant and carry out searches without consent. These draconian laws don’t hold the security establishment accountable and it gives them complete impunity from being punished.

Repeal AFSPA!

(For the past 2 weeks, I was into reading about fake encounters committed by the Indian security establishment, the real face of the Intelligence Bureau- ATS -NIA, the enforced disappearance of human rights defenders and atrocities committed by the security forces in Kashmir, North East, Punjab and Red Corridor. It’s important to know about these to realise that we are living in an undemocratic -police deep state run by politicians. I will be sharing them one by one).

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