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...India recast its Look East policy, which originated during the P.V. Narasimha Rao regime in the early 1990s, as the Act East policy in November 2014. But if the economic and infrastructure development that the policy calls for is to take place, one of the most vexatious issues concerning both the state as well as the Central governments must first be addressed—the continuation of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (Afspa) in Manipur. Afspa was imposed in Manipur in 1980 as it had been declared a “disturbed area”. In a landmark judgement in July 2016, the Supreme Court severely criticized Afspa as “symbolizing a failure of the civil administration and the armed forces”. The court was hearing a petition filed by hundreds of families against alleged fake encounters by the army and police forces over the last 20 years. The plea called for a probe by a Special Investigation Team (SIT) into the encounters. ...Live Mint on Jan. 4, 2017, 1:16 a.m.