GUWAHATI: At a time when stalemate continued between the Centre and Naga peace groups, the ministry of home affairs (MHA) on Wednesday declared the entire Nagaland state a “disturbed area” for six more months, enabling the continuation of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA).
The draconian law empowers security forces to conduct operations anywhere and arrest anyone without any prior warrant.
The MHA in a notification said that the central government was of the opinion that the area comprising the whole of Nagaland was in such a “disturbed and dangerous condition” that the use of armed forces in aid of the civil power was necessary.
A home ministry official said the decision to continue the declaration of Nagaland as a ‘disturbed area’ has been taken as killings; loot and extortion have been ongoing in parts of the state.
The AFSPA has been continued in the state despite the signing of a framework agreement on August 3, 2015, between the Centre and various Naga insurgent groups advocating peace dialogues.
However, the peace process met with a deadlock after NSCN-IM started pressing for a separate flag and Constitution for the state.