Extension of AFSPA in Arunachal Pradesh and Nagaland

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has extended the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) in certain districts of Arunachal Pradesh and Nagaland for an additional six months, effective from April 1, 2024. The decision follows a review of the law and order situation in these northeastern states.

Arunachal Pradesh

In Arunachal Pradesh, the AFSPA has been extended for six months in the following areas:

  • Tirap, Changlang, and Longding districts
  • Areas under the jurisdiction of Namsai, Mahadevpur, and Chowkham police stations in Namsai district, bordering Assam


In Nagaland, the AFSPA has been extended for six months in the following districts and police station areas:

  • 8 districts: Dimapur, Niuland, Chumukedima, Mon, Kiphire, Noklak, Phek, and Peren
  • 21 police station areas in five other districts of Nagaland, which has a total of 16 districts

Powers Under AFSPA

The Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958, grants sweeping powers to security forces in areas deemed as “disturbed”. Under the AFSPA, armed forces personnel are authorized to search, arrest, and open fire if deemed necessary for maintaining public order.

Reduced Application of AFSPA

In April 2022, the Centre reduced the number of disturbed areas under AFSPA in many parts of Nagaland, Assam, and Manipur. The Act was lifted from Tripura in 2015, Meghalaya in 2018, and Mizoram in the 1980s. Despite these reductions, the AFSPA remains in force in Jammu and Kashmir.

Demands for Repeal

Several political parties, NGOs, and civil society organisations in the northeastern region have been demanding the complete repeal of the AFSPA. Critics argue that AFSPA has led to human rights violations, while supporters claim it is necessary to maintain order in conflict-ridden areas.



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