AFSPA - Armed Forces Special Powers Act



  • Armed force special power act, is an act of the parliament of the India that grants powers to Indian armed force to maintain public order in “disturbed area”. 
  • AFSPA gives the authority to armed force to use other kind of force or fire upon even if it causes death only after giving such due warning against the person who is acting against the law or order in disturbed area.
  • The act further provides the power to arrest without arrest warrant if they found any cognizable offences, enter and search any premises in order to make such arrest without warrant and can ban possession of time arrested.

1. The special power which one is out in section provide that –

  • Power to use force, including open firing, even to the extent of causing death if prohibiting orders banning assembly of five or move persons or carrying of weapons and etc.., one in the force in the disturbed area.
  • Power to destroy any arms dump or any structures like hide-outs and training camps.
  • Power to arrest without warrant and use and can use the forces for that purpose. 
  • Power to enter and search any premises in order without any warrant to make arrest or necessary hostages, arms and authority.

However, it is to note that AFSPA is a special law that is in force only in certain parts of country, to which the act refers as ‘disturbed area’ which one is declared under the section 3 of AFSPA. The central government, or the state’s governer or the administrative of the union territory can declare a part of the state or UT as disturbed area.

AFSPA is currently in force in Assam, Nagaland, Manipur, 3 districts of Arunachal -Pradesh .

In jammu and kashimir, a separate law, armed forces (j&k) special powers act, 1990 has been in force 

 These powers are further abonded  by section 6 which provides – no prosecution suit or legal action can be instituted, except with the previous section of government, against anything done or purposed to be done in exercise of the powers conferred by the act.

The act is controversial in itself, it has atractted much more criticism when actions have resulted in death of civilians. These extra judicial killings grabed the attention of the supreme court in 2016, when it clarified that the ban under section 6 would not grant total immunity to the officers.