New Delhi: The Union Home Ministry has declared whole of Nagaland as a “disturbed area” for a period of one year from June 30, 2015. Its notification in this regard states that the Central government is of the opinion that the entire state is in such a “disturbed” and “dangerous” condition that the use of armed forces in aid of civil power is “necessary”.
Declaring whole of Nagaland as a “disturbed” area under Section 3 of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 will give the armed forces powers to search, raid and arrest without a warrant. Also, it would allow use of force by the Army personnel even to the extent of causing death, against one who puts law and order in a ‘disturbed’ area, in peril.
Incidentally, the Nagaland government has been seeking removal of the ‘disturbed’ area tag since 2005, citing the falling levels of insurgency-related incidents or deaths.
The declaration of Nagaland as a disturbed area comes a month after the Naga rebel outfit, NSCN(Khaplang), launched an ambush in adjoining Manipur, killing 18 Army personnel. The attack led the Army to retaliate with cross-border surgical strikes against camps of NSCN(K) and allied outfits like PLA in Myanmar. Further joint operations on the insurgents’ hideouts in Myanmar are currently being discussed with the Myanmar government.