People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)


No. 05

February 3, 2013




CPI(M) Hails AFSPA Review Recommendation


ON January 24, Mohammad Yusuf Tarigami, secretary of the CPI(M)’s Jammu & Kashmir  state committee, hailed the recommendation made by the Justice J S Verma committee to review the prevailing laws against sexual crimes.

In a statement issued on the day from Srinagar, Tarigami also referred to Justice Verma’s call to review the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) and appointment of a commissioner in Kashmir. He observed that there are many extreme clauses in the AFSPA which have led to misuse of the powers under different pretexts. Tarigami agreed with the viewpoint expressed by Justice Verma that sexual offences by armed forces and uniformed men should be brought under ordinary criminal laws.

Tarigami also welcomed Justice Verma’s recommendation vis-ŕ-vis appointment of special commissioners to ensure the safety of women complainants and witnesses in cases of sexual assault by armed personnel, besides regular monitoring by a special commissioner to ensure the security of women detainees in police stations and of women at army or paramilitary check points.

Tarigami added that if the provisions of the Justice Verma report were implemented, it would definitely be an effective measure. However, he cautioned that despite stringent measures in place, the community participation is necessary to uproot the social evils. "There is a dire need to change the mindset of the people," he pointed out