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BJP wants POTA back

india Updated: May 15, 2008 20:12 IST

In the wake of the Jaipur bomb blasts, the BJP on Thursday asked the Centre to convene a meeting of Chief Ministers to deliberate on a joint strategy to fight terror even as it stepped up attack on the UPA Government's anti-terror record.

The main Opposition party also remained non-committal on a proposal for having a federal agency to probe terror-related incidents and reiterated its demand for re-introduction of POTA saying it was a potent weapon to combat terror.

With the serial blasts providing ammunition, the party came out with statistics comparing the number of terrorists killed and attacks occured during the NDA regime and in the last three years in a bid to corner the Congress-led coalition.

During the NDA regime there were five major terror attacks in the hinterland while in the last three years there had been 22 and on an average 2,500 terrorists were killed every year from 1999 to 2003, which has now been reduced to about 1185, BJP spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad said.

On the proposal for having a federal agency which was first mooted by L K Advani when he was Home Minister, he said the party will give its opinion if the Centre comes out with a "structured proposal" and after analysing its details.

"The Congress should first bring a law on the lines of POTA or re-introduce it," he said noting that apprehensions of abuse or misuse of provisions of a law cannot become a ground to invalidate or scrap a law.

Keen to shift the blame of the Jaipur blasts onto the Centre, Prasad asked the UPA government to share credible intelligence information with states and ensure coordination between Centre and states to combat terror irrespective of the political divide.