Govt ready for dialogue with states on NCTC

With the chorus against the formation of National Counter-Terrorism Council turning louder, government today said it is ready for a dialogue to remove any misgivings or concerns of states opposing it.

Union Telecom and HRD Minister Kapil Sibal said each state is already represented in the central council of NCTC and if there was any misgiving, the Centre would remove it through dialogue.

"If they have any concerns, there is no problem in having a dialogue...If there is any misgivings, no problem, we can have a dialogue but all that is being done by the central government for counter terrorism operations," Sibal told reporters.

Explaining the rationale of setting up the NCTC, he said the powers that were earlier with the central government have been given to the NCTC for counter-terrorism operations.
"There is a central council of NCTC. The Director and three joint directors of NCTC and the heads of the anti-terrorist organisations or forces of each states are represented in it.

"So each state is represented. And they look after the overall activities of the NCTC. So this is the rationale of moving forward," he said.

The opposition to NCTC has grown louder with at least 13 states, including West Bengal headed by UPA ally Trinamool Congress, voicing concerns about the formation of the body, which they claimed is usurping the powers of states and disturbing the federal structure.

Sibal said, "I was also not aware of the details of the NCTC and came to know of it only recently".

On the proposed meeting of the group of ministers scheduled for tomorrow to discuss giving statutory backing to model code of conduct by which cases of its violation would be tried by the court instead of the Election commission, he said that he was not aware of the agenda.

"I am on the GOM but I am not aware of the agenda. It so happens that bureaucracy makes certain proposals and sometimes we discuss them while at others we reject them", he said.

The minister presented a list of names of BSP leaders facing criminal charges against whom the state govenment initiated proceedings to withdraw cases.

"I have never seen government trying to withdraw charges of rape and extortion and this is the manner in which this government has been functioning", he added.

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