Home minister Sushilkumar Shinde assumed office on Wednesday with a promise to focus on "cordial" Centre-state relations on his lips and an open mind to examine the central government's approach to naxals and the National Counter Terrorism Centre.
Shinde - who credited the Congress with appointing a Dalit as the second home minister - also added that he will try to plug the gaps in the relationship between the Centre and the states, despite "good work" by his predecessor P Chidambaram.
"I have been hearing from political circles in Central Hall in Parliament that there is still scope to plug the gaps in relations between the states and the Centre," Shinde told reporters after taking the charge.
But he did not get into details of the contentious internal security issues the country is facing, which had been Chidambaram's focus area.
"One has to have good relations with states. The states may be ruled by different parties. But I want to send a message to all CMs that we are all Indians and together we will work wherever there is a difficulty," he said.
In terms of controversial projects such as the NCTC, government sources said this could mean the home ministry may propose a watered-down version of the anti-terror centre with very limited mandate in - as far as powers of arrest is concerned - for the Centre.
But sources indicated Shinde was not inclined to hold daily meetings with chiefs of intelligence agencies and the National Security Adviser, an innovation by Chidambaram to ensure intelligence inputs did not slip into the cracks.