Join December 10, Rajghat, Delhi, Solidarity Fast | Sign the Petition – Demand Repeal AFSPA
Who is Irom Sharmila ?
Irom Sharmila Chanu also known as the “Iron Lady of Manipur” is a civil rights activist from the Indian state of Manipur. She has been fasting for more than 10 years now. This is believed to be the world’s longest hunger strike.
Irom started her fast unto death on November 2, 2000, after the Malom Massacre. Her primary demand to the Indian government isrepeal of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 (AFSPA), which allows soldiers to indefinitely detain any citizen on suspicion of being a rebel. The act has been the reason for permitting torture, forced disappearances, and extrajudicial executions.
Sharmila has been regularly arrested, released and re-arrested every year since 2000, because, under IPC section 309, a person who “attempts to commit suicide” is punishable with imprisonment up to 1 year. She is imprisoned in a government Hospital in Imphal, Manipur for many years now, where very few people can meet her.
Sharmila has held various protest and demonstrations with students, human rights activists and other concerned citizens in places like Jantar Mantar, Rajghat and so on. Sharmila has won many awards for her brave & selfless act for humanity & she was even nominated for the 2005 Nobel Peace Prize. Her struggle has received considerable international support and attention too.
When asked about fulfilling her personal dreams like marriage while fasting, she said tests needed to be passed for every upgrade. “For any promotion, we have to pass an experiment. In my case, I am experimenting to get success for making a difference for the whole society,” she said.
What can we do ?
Over the years many civil society groups & volunteers have campaigned in support of her cause. Recently ‘Save Sharmila Campaign’ was launched by National Alliance of Peoples’ Movements (NAPM) along with many other movement group, student bodies and civil society organisation. The ‘National Signature Campaign’ planned by NAPM is submitting the signatures of all supporters to the President of India, Smt Pratibha Patil on 10th Dec 2011, the International Human Rights Day.
Hundreds of women activists from across the country are gathering in a solidarity fast on December 10 from 9 am at Rajghat, New Delhi. Join them !
So let’s join the struggle of Irom Sharmila and thousands of others fighting against AFSPA. Sharmila has become the face of the struggle by punishing her body has been selflessly fighting for more than a decade for the human rights, dignity and peace of millions. Let’s show our support to our north-eastern fellow citizens who also have the right to life, peace & justice.
National Alliance of People’s Movements
National Office: Room No. 29-30, 1st floor, ‘A’ Wing, Haji Habib Bldg, Naigaon Cross Road, Dadar (E), Mumbai – 400 014;
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Web : www.napm-india.org