Renuka Shahane Offers Unconditional Support to the Now Homeless Irom Sharmila

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On August 9, the Iron lady of Manipur, Irom Sharmila, decided to break her 16-year-long fast protesting against the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA). But this decision, which was an individual choice, has caused a backlash from several people in her home state.

However, veteran actress and filmmaker Renuka Shahane decided to extend her full support to the social justice activist – offering Irom asylum in her own home in Mumbai.

Source: By [CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Irom’s decision to end her fast has both political and personal reasons; she intends on getting married to her fiancé and also to join the electoral process so she can run for the chief minister’s position. After she broke the fast by drinking honey in a symbolic gesture, she decided to move from her special ward, which served as her prison at the Jawaharlal Nehru Institute of Medical Sciences, to the ISKCON temple.

However, many groups refused to support her and she was barred from the ISKCON temple. After this she found herself back in the hospital.

Source: By Mongyamba (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 or GFDL], via Wikimedia Commons

“They misunderstood my step. I didn’t give up on my struggle, I have just changed my tactic,” Irom told NDTV. “I want them so much to know me, not their version of me. Their harsh reaction to an innocent human being… They were very harsh.”

Shahane enumerated the reasons for which Irom has faced this peculiar isolation in a poignant Facebook post.

Irom Sharmila if you have no place that is willing to accept you please stay with me in Mumbai, it will be an honour!…

Posted by Renuka Shahane on Wednesday, August 10, 2016

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