New Delhi: The crucial meeting of Chief Secretaries and the Police Chiefs to end the controversy on the provisions of the proposed anti-terror hub, the National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC) did not bear any positive result as non-Congress States continued to oppose its formation saying that it will infringe upon the duties of the state police forces.
Representatives of Odisha led by Bijay Kumar Patnaik, Chief Secretary of Odisha, Manmohan Prahraj, Director General of Police, U N Behera, Odisha Home Secretary and Abhay, Additional Director General of Police (Crime Branch) opposed the powers to be vested on the NCTC.
Similarly representatives from Gujarat, Chhattisgarh and Bihar voiced their concern at the high-level meeting chaired by Home Secretary R K Singh. The representatives of the non-Congress State said the Intelligence Bureau was already doing what NCTC is supposed to do and that there was no need to give power of arrest to the new agency.
However, representatives from the Congress-led States in the meeting favoured the setting up of the agency that will collate and analyse inputs on terror activities in India, sources present in the meeting said.
The NCTC formation was at first strongly opposed by Odisha CM, Naveen Patnaik. Later, over a dozen Chief Ministers had opposed the creation of NCTC on the ground that it would hurt the federal structure of the country and had written to Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh to intervene into the matter.
Following this, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had asked Chidambaram to address the concerns of the Chief Ministers who had opposed the formation of the NCTC. In return Chidambaram had written letters to 10 non-Congress Chief Ministers and had assured that the Union Home Secretary would convene a meeting of the police chiefs of all States to discuss in detail about the work, objectives, structure and power of NCTC. Furthermore in the wake of strong protests by non-Congress Chief Ministers, the Centre has put on hold the operationalisation of the NCTC from March 1 and decided to discuss with the State Governments before going ahead with the plan.