New Delhi: The Congress party remains divided over the issue of Armed Forces Special Power Act. Congress Deputy Leader in the Lok Sabha Captain Amarinder Singh has strongly defended the act and was against repealing of the Act.
Singh raised the verdict in the 2010 Machil encounter case, where 5 soldiers were given life sentences. He said that soldiers who commit crimes are firmly dealt with by the military, but that should not mean that AFSPA should be repealed or withdrawn.
He said, "Our soldiers are fighting a very difficult war being fired upon from everywhere. They need some legal protection. Isolated instances of aberrations by certain individuals must not be used against the AFSPA."
On Friday, senior Congress leader P Chidambaram had called AFSPA an 'obnoxious law'. He had said, "AFSPA is an obnoxious law that has no place in a modern, civilised country. It purports to incorporate the principle of immunity against prosecution without previous sanction. In reality, it allows the Armed Forces and the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) to act with impunity."
Chidambaram had said many cases have gone without investigation or punishment because of the AFSPA.
Chidambaram added that in 2010 the Home Ministry had initiated the process of amending AFSPA but it was resisted by the Armed Forces and the Ministry of Defence.
He has also appealed to the Central government to bring in a Bill to amend AFSPA during the winter session of Parliament.