Rights activist Irom Sharmila, who is on a fast for over 13 years in Manipur demanding repeal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), on Wednesday told a Delhi court that she was very much eager to eat if she gets the assurance that the “draconian” Act will be revoked.
Sharmila, who appeared before the court in pursuance to the production warrant issued against her in connection with a case lodged in 2006 for allegedly attempting to commit suicide during her fast-unto-death here at Jantar Mantar, claimed that wide scale discrimination was being done with the people from North East.
“I love my life very much and I am very much eager to eat something right here in the court, if I get an assurance that this undemocratic AFSPA is revoked,” Sharmila said with her eyes full of tears.
41-year-old Sharmila, who came to the court with her nose tube in place, a day after flying in from Manipur, also told metropolitan magistrate Akash Jain that she never intended to commit suicide and it was just a protest against AFSPA.
“There are scholars and experts, who have forced the revoking of TADA and POTA but no one as such has come forward against the more ‘severe’ AFSPA, which is against the principal of non-violence” she told the magistrate.
During the proceedings, when the court told her that she would be given exemption from physical appearance due to her health condition, Sharmila replied, “It is my case and I want to be physically present in the court during the proceedings.”
She also alleged that democratic rights of the people of North-East was being taken away under the garb of AFSPA.
To this, the magistrate said that what she was demanding was not under his jurisdiction and he has to restrict himself to the trial of the case only.
During the hearing, the court recorded the statements of two policemen, who were arrayed as prosecution witnesses in the case in which the Manipuri-activist is facing trial.
The court has fixed the matter for July 17 for recording of statements of other witnesses in the case.