The UPA government which is already reeling under various charges and controversies, found itself in the midst of a fresh trouble on Friday, Feb 17. Many Chief Ministers across the nation have protested the decision of setting up NCTC in their respective states.
WB Chief Minister and key ally of UPA government, Mamata Banerjee, grabbed the majority of attentions by demonstrating against NCTC scheme. [UPDATE: Crucial NCTC meet with CMs begins in Delhi]
But why these many CMs protest this system that can purportedly be an effective way to check terrorism, which is on raise in the country?
Are these CMs undermining national security interest just to protest UPA's decision or as they say it does compromise on rights of the state? Read on to find answers for yourselves.
What is NCTC?
The National Counter-terrorism Center (NCTC) is a proposed federal anti-terrorism unit modelled on the National Counter-terrorism Center of the USA. The proposal came after the 26/11 Mumbai attack. Serious intelligence and operational failure during the dreadful attack necessitated a federal agency with real time intelligence inputs to counter terrorist activities against India.
Now, why the states oppose the NCTC concept?
As many as nine Chief Ministers of different states have ridiculed the Centre's decision to instill NCTC across the states in India. And many have already dashed off their dissent note to PM Manmohan Singh, as well.
Mamata Banerjee is also among the rebellion state heads, as these CMs presume that this prime anti-terrorists agency may clamp down the rights of their respective states.
NCTC will set up small offices across the state to gather the real-time information. It will be headed by an Intelligence bureau official and report to Home Ministry.
NCTC officers can carry out raids without a prior permission of respective states. And the officers can arrest anyone over terrorism related cases. The state's other government authorities are bound to share details to the NCTC if required, no matter how confidential it is. Thus the anti-terror body will gather all real-time intelligence, exactly what IB is now lacking, and distribute information to other agencies, in order to have an effective system in place to tackle terrorism.
Meanwhile, it has the right to take assistance of any special force in the country including National Security Guard (NSG)
A group of nine dissent-CMs see it as "a fringe on the rights of states", Centre's "authoritarian" and "draconian", they have also suggested PM to re-look into the Centre's decision.