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BJP's amendment on NCTC defeated in Rajya Sabha

New Delhi, Tue, 20 Mar 2012 ANI

New Delhi, Mar 20 (ANI): The United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government on Tuesday secured a victory in Rajya Sabha, as the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) amendment on the National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC) issue was defeated.


During the division procedure, there were 105 votes against the BJP's motion and 82 in favour.


Several other amendments were withdrawn.


Earlier, asserting that the setting up of NCTC is an important step to tackle terrorism, the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, said: "What happened in Orissa... the abduction of Italians by Maoists... shows that our nation's security can be in danger if we are not alert."


"Abduction of two Italians in Orissa is a grim reminder of left-wing extremism. The abduction is an indication that our security has a threat." Dr. Singh said in the Rajya Sabha while replying to the Patil's address.


Referring to the charges levelled by the Opposition that the Centre was trying to destroy the federal structure of the country by operationalising the NCTC, Dr Singh said: "Nothing will be done that will infringe on the federal structure of Constitution."


"Adequate and full steps will be taken before the establishment of the NCTC. There will be consultations with the various heads on the matter before the next step. There are differences on the manner of the functioning and consensus can be brought through consultations and talks," he added.


Several state governments, including the Trinamool Congress Government in West Bengal, had opposed the establishment of the NCTC on grounds that it would hurt the country's federal structure.


Once set up, the main responsibility of the NCTC would be to ensure that a wide variety of security organisations in the country work in tandem, at least on issues related to terrorism.


It will also have the power to seek information, including documents, reports, transcripts, and cyber information from any agency, including from the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), the National Investigation Agency, the National Technical Research Organization, the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence and all seven central armed police forces, including the National Security Guard (NSG).


The body, which would function under the Intelligence Bureau, would be been given its own operational wing, with powers to arrest and conduct searches under Section 43A of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act. (ANI)


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