Iron Lady Irom Sharmila says she has changed her strategy for AFSPA :- On Sunday, the Iron Lady – Activist Irom Sharmila is making her electoral debut in the Manipur polls. She said that she has not given up her fight against controversial law AFSPA but only changed her strategy.
In her statement, Sharmila said that a section of people even wanted her “martyrdom” during the 16-year-old fast against the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) that she decided to end last year.
The activist formed her own party named as – Peoples Resurgence and Justice Alliance (PRJA), She has decided to fight the assembly elections with the sole agenda of withdrawal of the Act from Manipur.
Irom Sharmila is contesting the Thoubal seat against Manipur Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh and BJP’s L Bashanta Singh.
Sharmila said that controversial law – AFSPA has never been an issue in the polls. But I want to make a point in the elections that AFSPA is not only a draconian law but also one which is a gross violation of human rights.
Irom Sharmila is also known as the Iron Lady. She said that when she had met people and explained to them about her new strategy, they understood her and gave their blessings.
She criticised both Congress and BJP. She said that the economic blockade is a gameplan of BJP and Congress to divert the attention from the demand of withdrawal of AFSPA and misrule and corruption of Congress government.
The 44-year-old activist-turned-politician Sharmila said that there is no chance of going with Congress or BJP after elections. PRJA will prefer to go with small political outfits like CPI, CPI(M) and others who are against AFSPA.
PRJA has taken to online crowd funding. It is the first regional party in Manipur which has resorted to finance poll expenses through crowd funding and has so far collected Rs 4.5 lakh through it.
Irom Sharmila said that I campaign for the election on my cycle. I do not believe in publishing posters and hand bills. I think less than Rs one lakh is enough for a candidate to fight elections if they follow my style of campaigning.