Meghalaya HC asked Union Government to enforce AFSPA 1958 in Garo Hills region

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Who: Enforce AFSPA 1958 in Garo Hills region
What: Meghalaya HC asked Union Government
When: 2 November 2015

The Meghalaya High Court on 2 November 2015 asked the Union government to enforce the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, (AFSPA) 1958 in Garo Hills region in western part of the state.

The order was issued by the full bench comprising Chief Justice Uma Nath Singh, Justice TNK Singh and Justice SR Sen following a hearing related to the pending case of militants calling bandhs in the state.

The Court further said that the Union Government can enforce AFSPA for the purpose of deployment of armed forces in the aid of civil administration in order to restore public order and maintain the law and order.

The ruling is significant following the series of kidnappings and killings in Garo Hills with specific reference to the abduction of Chokpot Block Development Officer Jude Rangku T Sangma by Garo National Liberation Army militants.

Sangma is the brother-in-law of Superintendent of Police in-charge High Court security, Bobby Momin. Garo National Liberation Army militants also kidnapped and killed an Intelligence Bureau officer Bikash Singh.

Militant outfits have abducted 87 persons for ransom including 27 businessmen, 25 civilians, 25 employees of private firms, five government employees and five teachers.

In their order, the full bench also observed that even the Chief Justice and Judges of the High Court are also getting veiled threats that they would have to face the consequence after their retirement.