Sharmila’s brother Irom Singhajit told reporters at Manipur Press Club that everybody has the right to meet the anti-AFSPA campaigner as she is no more a prisoner but a free-woman.
He said that he took her ageing mother to JNIMS hospital in a wheelchair as she has been longing to meet Sharmila.
However, JNIMS security denied their entry into the security ward stating that they could not allow them without the Medical Superintendent’s permission.
Later, they asked Sharmila’s family to submit an application to the Medical Superintendant, Singhajit said.
As the Medical Superintendant was not there in his office, he along with his mother and sister requested the security personnel to allow them to meet Sharmila at least for five minutes, Singhajit said.
However, the security personnel not only remained adamant but also responded rudely to their repeated requests, he said.
Expressing deep dissatisfaction over the conduct of JNIMS security and the Government, Singhajit said that he was pained to see his mother waiting for the permission sitting on the floor near the security ward for around an hour.
He said that JNIMS authority should realise that she has not seen her daughter’s face for 16 years.
Saying that Sharmila is no more a prisoner and all her well-wishers and family have the right to meet her, Singhajit said that they are now compelled to suspect that may be a hidden agenda of the Government to isolate Sharmila from her family and friends.
On the other hand, Singhajit clarified that his family had never denied Sharmila’s return to their house.
He said that everybody in their family have been waiting for her homecoming. Singhajit said that some sections of the National media had wrongly reported that Sharmila had been denied shelter even at her own house.
Singhajit further clarified that neither people of the State nor her family had ever banished Sharmila.
He further said that their family has no dissatisfaction and anger over Sharmila’ decision to break her 16 years long fast.
They knew that Sharmila took the decision only to change her strategy as the Government remained unmoved even after staging the hunger strike for many years, Singhajit said.
He further said that there is no opposition from their family on Sharmila’s decision to contest election or enter marital life.
It is her right to make decision on these matters, Singhajit said.
However, there was a slight dissatisfaction and shock as she announced all these things all of a sudden without consulting CSOs and family members.
Human rights activist Babloo Loitongbam said that the Government would definitely cite security reasons for today’s denial to meet Sharmila.
Urging the Government to remove all these unnecessary restrictions at the earliest, Babloo opined that any type of security must be given to the anti-AFSPA crusader at her discretion.
He said that it was wrong of the National media to report as if the people of Manipur and her family had banished Sharmila.