It has been 16 years since Irom Sharmila, popularly called as the Iron lady of Manipur, started her fast in protest to a massacre in Imphal in which 10 persons were killed. She has been demanding repeal of the AFSPA (Armed Forces Special Powers Act).
The 44-year old Sharmila started her fast when she was 28 years old and she ended it on Tuesday, exactly a month after the Supreme Court judgment questioned the immunity enjoyed by the security personnel under the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act of 1958 (AFSPA) against criminal action for the deaths of 10 people in Imphal. She could not hold her tears back after taking drops of honey.
Irom Sharmila Breaks Her Fast:
The iron lady, who had been force-fed all these years regained composure after some time and spoke to the press, announcing that she wants to be the Chief Minister of Manipur some day. “There is no democracy in Manipur. I want to be Chief Minister of Manipur and make positive changes”, she said.
She was very much determined to withdraw her fast and she made an appeal to the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate’s court to set her free, soon after she reached the court. However, she does not have a place to go and she does not want to see her mother Irom Sakhi as she had promised her that she will meet her only after the AFSPA is repealed. “I think I want to settle in an ashram,” she told the press.