Irom Sharmila
Irom Sharmila facing suicide charges has been acquitted by Manipur court today.Reuters File

A Manipur court has ordered the release of activist Irom Sharmila, who has been in judicial custody for an attempt to suicide case.

Ordering Sharmila's immediate release, the court cleared the attempted suicide case against the civil rights activist. Sharmila has been on a hunger strike for past 13 years now, demanding repeal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act.

The Manipur court acquitted her, saying the prosecution failed to provide any evidence to support the case that accused Sharmila of attempted suicide.

The court also pointed out that the case was just an allegation, devoid of proofs, which prohibits the law to arrest the 42-year-old and thus she has to be released, according to Zee News.

Sharmila, who has been on a hunger strike since November 2000, was under house arrest in a government hospital, where she was force fed through nose, claiming that she was attempting suicide.

Protesting the 'Malom massacre', in which 10 civilians were allegedly killed by the Assam Rifles in Imphal, she started her hunger strike in 2000, and it is still ongoing.

Sharmila has been demanding repealing of Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) 1958, which allowed the paramilitary forces to take whatever action they find appropriate for any suspected activity in the state.

The Act, introduced for the safety of the citizens from the uprising insurgencies in some parts of north-eastern states, later became a tool of human rights violations with alleged torture, killing and rapes in the states.

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