Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal on Friday slammed the UPA’s move to form the NCTC, describing the measure as “a directly collaborationist measure by the Centre in an attempt to usurp whatever is left of the states’ authority in matters of governance”.
“This also runs counter to the spirit of the federal principle, which is the dominant sentiment of all states and the people all over the country. We cannot accept this measure,” Badal said in a statement released on his behalf by his media advisor Harcharan Bains.
Bains said the chief minister and SAD president Sukhbir Singh Badal would on their return from a trip abroad take up the matter with other state governments and all “like-minded parties” to build a national consensus against the decision.
Sukhbir will meet heads of all regional and national parties to mobilise national opinion against the move, said Bains. The chief minister, who is on a week-long tour abroad, said that the move is “patently ill-advised, ill-conceived” and unwise.
“The state governments are much better equipped to deal with terrorism, both in terms of ground-level intelligence gathering apparatus and fighting capacity of their security forces,” he said.
“Past record shows that the central agencies have failed to deal with the scourge of terrorism as effectively as they should have done. We need strong ground-level response to the problem and only the state governments can ensure that.”
Badal alleged that instead, the Centre was dealing with it in a “remote-control” fashion.
He said the Centre had already encroached upon the rights of the states by quietly transferring several subjects from the state’s lists to the concurrent list.
The states cannot allow such “draconian and dictatorial” centralisation of powers, the chief minister said. “We will fight it tooth and nail along with other states who share our perception,” he said.
“State governments are much better equipped to deal with terrorism, both in terms of ground-level intelligence gathering apparatus and fighting capacity. Past record shows that central agencies have failed to deal with the scourge of terrorism as effectively as they should have done”