Iron Lady of Manipur, Chanu Sharmila, announced to contest elections and become chief minister soon after she ended her 16-year-long fast on Tuesday.
Soon after breaking her 5757 days fast with honey she said, “I would contest the elections for the people of Manipur.”
She added that there is no democracy in the state. I want to be chief minister of Manipur so that I can bring positive changes here.”
She added that after being released from the hospital turned prison she will be staying at an ashram and would not seek any security.
The Iron Lady was released by the court soon after she ended her fast. The 44-year-old, Sharmila, was in judicial custody on charges of attempting suicide.
Sharmila has been the nucleus of all protests against AFSPA in Manipur and neighbouring north-eastern states.
She had started her hunger-strike in November 2000 three days after a battalion of Assam Rifleshad allegedly gun-downed 10 villagers in Imphal. Since 2010 she went on hunger-strike demanding revocation of Armed Forces Special Power Act (AFSPA).
According to the act armed forces have the authority to arrest any person on suspicion of being a terrorist and in many occasions even kill on suspicion without the fear of being trialed in court.
AFSPA is in effect in north-eastern states and Jammu and Kashmir.
Many believe the Iron lady, a global icon of resistance, decision to end her fast a month after the Supreme Court questioned the immunity enjoyed by security forces under AFSPA of 1958 against criminal action for acts committed in disturbed areas.
Denizens of Manipur are happy and see a new ray of hope with her announcement of contesting the elections.