NIC meet to discuss communal violence bill

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is expected to preside the meeting which is supposedly going to discuss the issues,  including the controversial Communal Violence Bill drafted by Sonia Gandhi-headed National Advisory Council (NAC).

The meeting of  the 147-member strong NIC will take place after a period of almost three years. Notably, this will be the first meeting of NIC after its reconstitution in April 2010.

The NIC, chaired by the Prime Minister includes Union Ministers, Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha and all Chief Ministers, apart from leaders of national and regional political parties, chairpersons of National Commissions, mediapersons, public figures, business leaders and representatives of women's organisations.

In the letter sent to NIC members four points have been listed to find ways and means to check radicalisation of youth in the name of religion & establish communal harmony, fight discrimination against minorities, address issues of civil disturbances and terror and the approach to Communal Violence Bill.

According to sources, NIC meeting is expected to attract attention for the response of chief ministers to the idea of creating a National Authority and State authorities to ensure both accountability of public officials as well as to ensure justice and reparation in the wake of communal violence or reject it because it would limit the powers of state governments when dealing with communal violence.

The idea of creating National and State authorities is a key provision in the NAC draft of Communal Violence Bill. Also, it would be interesting to see how far BJP succeeds in demolishing the group definition of minorities given in the same draft.

The meeting of NIC to tackle communalism comes three days after the Delhi High Court blast that killed 13 people. The last meeting of the NIC was held in New Delhi on October 13, 2008.

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