Human rights crusader Irom Sharmila was acquitted on charges of attempt to commit suicide (under section 309) by an Imphal court on Wednesday.
After she was acquitted, the ‘Iron Lady of Manipur’ announced that she will set up a new regional political party on October 10 to contest the coming Manipur assembly polls due early next year. “We will float our new party on October 10. I hope I will accelerate my new mission to integrate with the people after my 16-year struggle with this,” added Sharmila.
Earlier this year on August 9, Sharmila ended her fast against the controversial Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) after she was released on bail. The rights crusader has time and again been arrested, released and rearrested on charges of attempts to commit suicide since she began her fast in November, 2000. Sharmila will fight the polls from Thoubal, the home constituency of chief minister Okram Ibobi Singh, on the key agenda to remove AFSPA.
As part of Sharmila’s reach out mission to integrate with society since she was discharged by JNIMS hospital on August 27, she had stayed in Ukhrul district for a few days and interacted with people. At present, she is putting up at an ISKCON-run naturopathy resort-cum-ashram in Imphal West.