Sharmila remanded to further judicial custody

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IMPHAL, July 5: Amidst the intensification of nationwide campaign titled ‘Save Sharmila campaign’ in support of her struggle, hunger striker Irom Chanu Sharmila was produced before the court today.

Sharmila was produced before the CJM Imphal East and she was remanded further to judicial custody for 15 days.

Human Rights crusador Sharmila’s appearance before the court came as civil society bodies from across the country are preparing to intensify the nationwide campaign in support of her struggle.

Speaking to mediaperson at the court complex, Sharmila expressed her happiness at the support given to her cause by various rights groups from different parts of the country.

While stating that she is gaining confidence due to the increasing support of her cause, Sharmila expressed her happiness on learning that more people across the country and outside are beginning to understand her cause and they are extending support to the popular demand of repealing the Armed Forces Special Powers Act.

She also expressed hope that one day she will win and the draconian legislation will surely be scrapped.

While entering the court complex, Sharmila also spoke to Mohammed Tanveer Iqbal of the Asian Center for Social Studies, who has been in Imphal for two days as a part of preparation for furthering the ‘Save Sharmila’ campaign.

The campaign is jointly carried on by the National Alliance of Peoples Movement (NAPM), Asha Parivar, Gandhi Global Family, Jagriti Mahila Samiti, Khudai Khitmadgar, Yuva Koshish, Mission Bharatiya, Sadbav Mission and the Asian Center for Social Studies.

The group had organized a candle light solidarity prayer at Rajghat, New Delhi on June 25.

People from various parts of the country turned up to attend the programme. Imminent personalities like Taslima Nasreen, Pritish Nandy and Sudhir Tailang have extended their support to the campaign through their tweets.

Before leaving Imphal today Tanveer Iqbal said the next campaign would start from July 9. On that day the groups would submit a memorandum to the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and other central leaders.

“Our campaign demands positive steps to hold talk with Sharmila, to send an all party delegation to her, to send members of National Women’s Commission and National Human Rights Commission and also special medical team of doctors from New Delhi to examine the health of Irom Sharmila,” Iqbal said.

Sharmila had launched her fast unto death agitation demanding scraping of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act on November 5, 2000 after Assam Rifles personnel shot dead ten civilians in cold blood at Malom in Imphal West in retaliation to a militant attack on November 2.

Since then she was freed off and on at the end of one year jail term for the offence of attempting to commit suicide, but she was taken back every time she was freed as she had refused to call off her fast.

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