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Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma suggested on Tuesday the “debate” on retaining the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act in the state post-February 28 would end soon, pointing to the legislation’s diminished requirement in a scenario where the Army no longer conducts counter-insurgency operations in most parts, reports Prabin Kalita.
“The AFSPA is linked to the Army’s presence rather than paramilitary forces… AFSPA is no longer required in Assam as the Army is no longer here,” he said. The CM also made an informal request to the Centre to sign a peace deal with the pro-talks faction of Ulfa before taking any step to initiate a dialogue with Ulfa-I, the faction led by Paresh Barua, to avoid the problem of talking to too many groups at the same time, as sometimes seen in Nagaland.

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