Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Monday said that Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) will be completely withdrawn from the state within this year.
“We are aiming at withdrawing AFSPA completely from Assam by the end of 2023. We will also rope in ex-military personnel to train our police force,” he said.
Sarma also attended the first-ever conference of armed police commandants at the Police Training Centre in Dergaon here.
“With the continuous improvement of the situation in the state, the AFSPA will likely be lifted from the entire state by the end of this year. In such a situation, Assam Police battalions would be empowered to replace Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) other than the number of CAPFs whose presence is mandatory in the state as per law,” he said.
The Chief Minister mentioned that steps will be taken to ensure that there is a positive change in the mindset of the forces of the battalions to make them feel that commandants and personnel belonging to different battalions are integral parts of the police forces in Assam.
“Adequate steps will be taken to empower the Assam Police Battalions so that they themselves are complete to deal with law and order in the state. They will also be reoriented to control the mob without using lethal weapons or using them to the minimum extent possible,” he added.
Sarma also said that considering the important role played by the commandants and the Assam police battalions, the Commandants’ Conference will be organised every six months.
“This will be done to bring about positive changes in the rank and file of the battalions and give a more result-oriented police force to the state,” he said.
DGP Assam Police G.P. Singh, special DGP Harmeet Singh, and other senior police officers were present also.