Suicide bid case false, Irom Sharmila tells court

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Civil rights activist Irom Sharmila, accused of a suicide bid during her fast-unto-death protest in 2006, told a court in New Delhi on Tuesday that she was implicated in a false case because of worldwide media attention to her struggle.

Sharmila, the civil rights activist from Manipur, told Metropolitan Magistrate Akash Jain, “My struggle was attaining (attention) in national and international media and because of that police violated my fundamental right and forcibly removed me from Jantar Mantar (Delhi) and implicated me in the present false case.”

She said thousands of innocent people have been killed by the armed forces and hundreds have been raped in Manipur.

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She further said, “I have been demanding the Armed Forces Special Powers Act be repealed or be lifted from Manipur as it has caused immense hardship to the common man of Manipur.”

She emphasised the fact that no action has been taken against such things under the garb of the AFSPA.

While recording her statement as an accused in the case, Sharmila claimed to have been implicated in a false and fabricated case, saying prosecution witnesses are “interested witnesses”.

“It is correct that I sat on fast at Jantar Mantar on 4 October 2006, but I have been fasting since 2000 and the same had not affected my health. I never refused medical check-up as the same was not required,” she said.

Sharmila has been on a fast for about 15 years, seeking repeal of the AFSPA. The court on 4 March, 2013, framed charges against Sharmila for attempting to commit suicide in Delhi, and put her on trial after she refused to plead guilty to the offence.

Sharmila denied having attempted suicide while fasting at Jantar Mantar in Delhi.

The court on 6 June concluded the recording of statements of prosecution witnesses in the case.

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