The decision was taken at a Cabinet meeting on December 1 after considering the overall situation of the state, state Education Minister and government spokesman M Okendro said.

Section 3 of the AFSPA empowers the state government to extend the disturbed area over the entire state or some selected areas, Okendro said.

Except the eight assembly segments in the Imphal Municipal Council in the city, the disturbed area status would be applicable to the valley and hill districts in the rest of the state.

"Taking serious note of frequent bomb blasts and other acts of violence, the government considered it necessary to extend the disturbed area status in the state," the spokesman said

The AFSPA, which was imposed in the state since September 1980, has been extended from time to time, the sources said.

It would continue to be in force till further orders, the sources said.

The extension will allow security forces to operate and aid civil administration to flush out insurgents.

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