After writing to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh opposing special powers given to National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC), Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik has urged other chief ministers to oppose the union home ministry’s move.
NCTC, constituted in the Intelligence Bureau (IB) is India’s first dedicated body to prevent terrorist strikes and will be operational from March 1 with powers to “control and coordinate” all counter-terrorism measures in the country.
In a letter to Prime Minister Singh on Monday, Patnaik had said that the organisation’s powers had “draconian overtone” and would infringe on the federal structure of the states as enshrined in the Constitution. Patnaik objected to some powers including the one that vested in NCTC director powers to arrest and search without consulting the state government.
On Tuesday, writing a letter to Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalitha, Patnaik said the union government in the ministry of home affair office memorandum had constituted the NCTC and had vested wide ranging powers on it, without prior consultation with the states.: “I am of the view that we, state governments, must resist this blatant encroachment on the federal powers of our people and our governments.”
Patnaik told the Tamil Nadu chief minister that he had already discussed the matter with West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerji.
According to sources in Odisha chief minister office, Patnaik also discussed the matter with former Andhra Pradesh chief minister and Telugu Desham supremo N Chandrababu Naidu.