Mixed response from North Eastern states on NCTC

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Prime Minister Manmohan Singh
New Delhi, May 5: Mixed response was evoked from the North Eastern states today by the the Union Government's proposed NCTC with some of them suggesting riders in it to control misuse of powers and others rejecting the move as "encroachment".

Criticising the Centre, Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar expressed his anguished over several steps, including notification of NCTC and proposed amendments to the RPF and BSF Acts, being taken by the Central Government with serious implication on federalism and tantamount to encroachment upon the rights of the States.

"The concern expressed by several state governments on the tendency of the Central Government to invade into the functional domain of state governments must be looked into seriously", he said.

Sarkar strongly opposed the vesting of the National Counter Terrorism Centre with powers to arrest and seize without informing the states. He warned that "arming an intelligence body, which is not accountable to Parliament or courts, with such powers will have undesired consequences which must be considered dispassionately". The chief minister also said, "even the NCTC of the USA, which is the model for the Indian NCTC, does not have such legal powers of seizure, arrest, etc".

The CM accused the Centre of showing lack of trust on the state governments and ability of the state police by allowing its proposed anti-terrorism wing "to play the pivotal role of tackling the menace of terrorism".

Sarkar said the mandate of NCTC should be limited to only collection, collation and analysis of intelligence by coordinating with various intelligence agencies to avoid misuse or abuse of power. The Chief Ministers were expressing their views during a especially called meeting on the NCTC by the Centre in the national capital. 

PTI

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